The main purpose of this ongoing blog will be to track planetary extreme or record temperatures related to climate change. Any reports I see of ETs will be listed below the main topic of the day. I’ll refer to extreme or record temperatures as ETs (not extraterrestrials).😉
Main Topic: Booming Economies Lead To Resurgence Of King Coal
Dear Diary. So far during 2021 the western U.S. has seen three amazingly hot heatwaves, with the third raging in the Southwest this weekend and beyond. Yet, I saw a few messages this week on Twitter that nothing is wrong with our climate system and that “extra carbon makes the planet green.” Well, any extra carbon pumped into the atmosphere certainly looks like it is making the West dry, baked, and brown.
One would think that by this point in history one of the main climate changing culprits would be highly regulated, if not banned altogether. Au contraire. After the worst of the COVID19 crisis passed economies have come roaring back to life with a big demand for energy. Unfortunately the most polluting energy substance on Earth is highly in the mix. Here is mire from Bloomberg:
Energy & Science
Coal Output in U.S. Seen Rising Most Since 1990 on Global Demand
By Will Wade July 8, 2021, 10:15 AM PDT
- U.S. output is forecast to jump 15% on soaring electric demand
- ‘The stars are aligning’ to support global consumption of coal
The surging, post-pandemic U.S. economy is driving an unexpected boom in coal, the latest sign that demand for the dirtiest fossil fuel remains resilient.
American coal production this year will swell 15% to meet stronger demand for electricity at home and abroad, according to the U.S. Energy Department’s July outlook. That would be the most since at least 1990 and nearly double the 8% increase projected in May, when the economic rebound was still in earlier stages of recovery.
The shift underscores the vicious circle of climate change as more extreme temperatures drive power demand just as extensive drought cuts output from hydropower dams. That prompts utilities to burn more of the dirtiest fossil fuel, a pattern also exacerbated by high natural gas prices. At the same time, key exporters including Australia and Colombia face supply problems that have helped lift global prices to a 10-year high and added to international demand for U.S. coal exports.
“Everything that could happen that’s positive from the demand standpoint is happening,” said Andrew Cosgrove, a mining analyst with Bloomberg Intelligence. “The stars are aligning.”
That growing appetite will help boost U.S. exports of the fuel by 21% this year, and another 19% in 2022, the Energy Department said Wednesday in its latest short-term outlook report. The department said its projections are based on forecasting firm IHS Markit’s projection that the world’s largest economy will grow by 7.4% in 2021.
The outlook also is driving up mining company share prices. Peabody Energy Corp., the biggest U.S. coal producer, and rival Arch Resources Inc. both hit 18-month highs this week. Consol Energy Inc. is trading near the highest since August 2019.
And the coal boom is unlikely to lose momentum anytime soon. As long as economic growth remains robust, so too will energy demand, according to Lucas Pipes, an analyst at B. Riley Securities.
Even though the fuel faces strong headwinds in the U.S. and Europe, where efforts to curb climate change are prompting utilities to close coal-fired power plants, global consumption is still increasing because of demand in Asia. And because suppliers aren’t opening new mines, prices are likely to remain high.
“I’m not seeing any changes in these trends,” said Pipes. “It bodes well for coal.”
Here are some major “ET’s” reported from Friday and Saturday:
Here is some more June 2021 climatology:
Here is more climate and weather news from Saturday:
(As usual, this will be a fluid post in which more information gets added during the day as it crosses my radar, crediting all who have put it on-line. Items will be archived on this site for posterity. In most instances click on the pictures of each tweet to see each article. The most noteworthy items will be listed first.)
Now here are some of today’s articles and notes on the horrid COVID-19 pandemic:
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Guy Walton “The Climate Guy”