China Ramps Up Coal Production As U.S. Coal Declines

Brittany M. Hughes | November 17, 2016
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Less than a year after promising in Paris to cut back on CO2 emissions to tamp down on alleged man-made climate change, China is ramping up coal production because it’s people actually want to stay warm in the winter.

Due to an increased demand for coal coupled with a short supply and impending winter weather, the communist regime is now allowing coal plants to run for 330 days as opposed to the 276 days previously allowed under the adopted environmental regulations. For those not so great with math, this adds another nearly two months to a coal plant’s annual permitted run time. 

According to Reuters:

China adopted new rules to stimulate coal production on Thursday to counter surging prices and Premier Li Keqiang said the country had to balance demand for heating over winter with efforts to tackle pollution.

Given that China, the U.S. and a host of other global entities just met in Paris to hammer out new environmental agreements last December, it took less than a year for China to realize its people needed electricity and heat more than they needed to cut back on CO2 emissions.

"This is the biggest policy adjustment to lift coal production so far," Huaan Futures coal analyst Wang Fei said. "We are expecting coal mines to quickly increase production as soon as early 2017."

The new limit will be effective until the end of the winter heating season, NDRC said in a statement.

And then the limit will again be scaled back -- at least, until temperatures drop somewhere around next November.

As China ramps up its coal production (which produces far more air pollution than coal plants operated in the U.S.), once-prosperous coal communities across America continue to struggle with high unemployment rates, decreasing revenues and budget shortfalls, and the myriad social ills that come with high levels of poverty. In fact, the American coal industry, which burns coal cleaner than any other place on the planet, continues to choke under intensifying regulations even as China's air pollution makes its way across the Pacific to the United States and kind of negates the whole point. 

It's no big secret that coal was headed for some hiccups as new energy sources came online. But even as coal has struggled in the face of other technologies like fracking, which has cheapened the cost of natural gas and created new competition for America’s oldest power industry, endless government regulations on coal plants and mines have shifted coal country’s decline into the express lane, decimating local economies and killing jobs at a rate arguably much faster than anything the market would have naturally driven while offering no replacement industries.

But hey, while President Obama continues taking his executive axe to the cleanest coal burners in the world (and the tens of thousands of Americans they used to employ), it’s nice to know the folks in China will stay warm and toasty this year.

Check out MRCTV's new documentary, "Collateral Damage," focusing on the human toll of the EPA's war on coal here: