Fall in coal production in the United States in 2020
Global coal production fell by 4.5% in 2020, despite a rising production in China and India
After three years of growth, global coal production decreased again in 2020, as slowing electricity consumption reduced coal demand. Coal production grew by 1.4% in China, the largest coal producer (49% of the global output), for the fourth year in a row. It also increased slightly in India despite a lower consumption but contracted strongly in Indonesia over lower domestic demand and tight import restrictions in China, returning to its 2018 level. In other large coal producing countries, production continued to follow a downward trend, that was aggravated by the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. It collapsed in the United States (-24%) in a context of lower demand from the power sector and fell in Russia (-9%) and Australia (-6%). In the EU, coal production contracted by more than 16%, decreasing in all countries, especially in Germany and Poland, due to a lower electricity demand and rising CO2 prices. It also fell in Turkey, in South Africa and collapsed in Colombia (-23%, in a context of national lockdown followed by a 3-month strike at a major mine).
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According to Brazil's National Electric Energy Agency (ANEEL), the installed wind capacity in Brazil has just reached the 20 GW milestone, from 17.1 GW at the end of 2020. More than 750 wind parks are operational in Brazil, and 90% of the installed wind capacity is located in the Northeast region.
According to the Ministry of Power, India has reduced its peak power deficit from 16.6% in financial year (FY) 2007-2008 to 0.4% in FY 2020-2021 (-16.2% points). Indeed, the country's power peak deficit fell from 18 GW in 2007-2008 to 0.8 GW in 2020-2021. Since 2008, India has installed over 240 GW of power capacity, including 139 GW of coal (58% of the total), 37 GW of solar (16%), and 28 GW of wind (12%). Over the same period, the country's electrification rate increased from 72% to 95% (+23% points).
According to Statistics Norway, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the country declined by 3.5% in 2020 to 49.3 MtCO2eq (-1.8 MtCO2eq) thanks to a reduction in emissions from oil and gas extraction (-5%, i.e. -722 ktCO2eq), in air traffic (-32%, i.e. -356 ktCO2eq), and in road transport (-4%, i.e. -346 ktCO2eq, due to travel restriction, home office and the increasing share of electric cars and rechargeable hybrid vehicles). Overall, Norway’s GHG emissions in 2020 stood 4.2% below their 1990 levels.
According to Ireland's Environmental Protection Agency, the country's greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions decreased by 3.6% in 2020 to 58 MtCO2eq. The decrease in emissions is reflected in most sectors with the exception of increases in residential, agriculture and public services. In the energy sector, GHG emissions fell by 7.9% (-0.74 MtCO2eq), as peat-fired power generation halved and renewable power generation increased noticeably (+15% from wind), covering 42% of the Irish power mix. Residential emissions grew by 9% (+0.59 MtCO2eq), as a result of colder temperatures, historic low oil prices (impacting heating choices), and home working. Emissions from transports fell by nearly 16% (-1.9 MtCO2eq) due to transport restrictions. Overall, Ireland's GHG emissions are still only 7% below 2005 level. The country committed under an EU agreement known as the Effort Sharing Decision to cut GHG emissions by 20% between 2005 and 2020.