Monday, October 30, 2017

Italy to Phase Out Coal by 2025

Coal plant (Credit: Click to Enlarge.
In an announcement widely celebrated as great news for the climate, Italy’s economic development minister confirmed that his country is committed to phasing out coal and will end all use by 2025.  However, the strategy of how the country expects to meet this commitment has yet to be revealed.

The statement on Tuesday the 24th of October adds Italy to the list of countries which have pledged to end coal burning: the UK, Canada, and France.

Coal accounted for roughly 30% of the electricity generated in the UK in 2014, the year before its government made its own announcement to phase out the fossil fuel by 2025.  In  2016 that figure had fallen to 9%, and on April 21st 2017, the UK had its first 24-hour period without coal-fired power generation since shortly after the Industrial Revolution, in 1882.

An abundance of hydroelectric resources in Canada mean that just 20% of the country’s energy use relies on coal.  And France, which made a pledge to phase out coal by 2022 in July 2017, gets just 4% of its power from coal due to its extensive nuclear energy industry.

Italy’s use of coal-fired power falls somewhere in the middle of this spectrum.  15% is the figure given by Argus, but approximately 90% of the coal burned in Italy is imported from overseas — from countries such as Russia, Australia, the US, and South Africa.  The closure of Italian coal-fired plants by 2025 will therefore have more of an impact on coal exporting countries around the world than on the Italian economy.

Read more at Italy to Phase Out Coal by 2025

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