Industry Analysis & Industry Trends
Coal's position in global electricity markets stems from its relative accessibility, affordability and distribution around the globe. Global thermal and metallurgical coal prices recovered rapidly as demand for electricity generation stabilized following the recession, especially in the developing world. However, environmental concerns surrounding coal-generated power have increased in the past five years, and are expected to continue doing so in the next five years. In the five years to 2021, demand for coal is anticipated to be moderate. Developing nations will continue expanding infrastructures to supply populations with reliable and affordable electricity. Consequently, industry revenue is expected to grow over the next five years.
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The Global Coal Mining industry produces two types of coal: black coal and brown coal (also known as lignite). Black coal can be further broken down into thermal coal and coking coal. Coal is categorized based on its contents of carbon (i.e. energy) and moisture, which in turn determine its value.
Thermal coal (also known as steaming coal) is used to convert to electricity as a source of energy. Thermal coal generally contains less carbon than coking coal, making it unsuitable for steel making; instead, it has relatively high energy content, thus suiting it for electricity generation. Currently, an estimated 73.6% of global coal production (by volume) consists of thermal coal... read more