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Polish miner PGG plans new mine as UN seeks end to coal era

Coal News - Published on Tue, 11 Dec 2018

Image Source: ET
Reuters reported that Polish state-owned PGG, the European Union's biggest producer of thermal coal, said it plans to sink a new mine near where UN talks to wean the world off fossil fuels are taking place. The Imielin North project, around 20 kilometres from Katowice, would cost at least PLN 1.5 billion, with up to half the funding provided by PGG, its chief executives Mr Tomasz Rogala told. Poland's president said this week he would not allow anyone "to murder coal", outraging many of the thousands of delegates representing nearly 200 countries at the conference.

Mr Rogala expects the new mine to be completed in around five years' time and have a reserve base of 60 million tonnes. That compares with PGG's annual output of around 30 million tonnes. While coking coal is on the EU list of strategic minerals because of its use in steel, coal for power generation is more difficult to justify.

He said that he understands the need to move on from coal, but alternative sources must be in place first. "I have pressure to find new business," he said, adding that when effective electricity storage was developed, coal generation would be obsolete.

Large-scale battery storage is a holy grail for those who favour green energy, as it would make wind and solar power as reliable as coal, nuclear and gas.

He added that "It (battery storage) can change everything. The first effective electricity storage will end coal generation. We have to stop climate change. But I don't agree that European coal is responsible (alone), as the greatest use of coal is elsewhere."

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Posted By : Nanda Koijam on Tue, 11 Dec 2018
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