This is why you should contribute towards unforeseen future

The COVID-19-induced lockdowns that stalled a number of polluting activities helped us realise how beautiful a pollution-free world is. However, as governments relax restrictions and economic activity returns, demand for energy and, in turn, pollution would increase. Hence the significant buzz around adopting clean technology when the crisis ends.

Coal and its uses

Coal is a combustible black or brownish-black sedimentary rock and our most abundant fossil fuel. It is used in the form of coke for metallurgical processes, such as steel making, and as steam or thermal coal for generating power. It is also essential in the production of specialist products, such as activated carbon, silicon metal and carbon fibre.

Challenges in coal power use

Coal is composed mainly of carbon, with smaller amounts of other elements such as sulphur, mercury, lead and arsenic. Burning coal releases mercury, lead and arsenic into the environment, increasing air pollution. Coal combustion also releases considerable carbon dioxide (CO2) — one of the main greenhouse gases — into the atmosphere, adding to global warming.

Coal is, therefore, one of the major sources of CO2 emissions. CO2 released through coal combustion is responsible for over 0.3°C of the 1.0°C increase in global average annual surface temperature above pre-industrial levels, according to a US Energy Information Administration (EIA) report. Coal-fired power generation was the largest emitter in 2018, accounting for around 30% of all energy-related CO2 emissions.

Introduction to clean coal technology

Various technologies are being developed to reduce the negative environmental effects of power generation from coal and climate change. The collection of such technologies is known as clean coal technology (CCT).

One such emission-reduction technology that has been introduced is carbon capture, use and storage (CCUS). This technology involves the capture of waste CO2 from coal combustion and its transportation via ship or pipeline for safe use or storage, preventing it from entering the atmosphere.

Carbon Capture Utilization & Storage Routes

EOR: Enhanced oil recovery


The world requires clean and reliable power generation technology, and CCUS technology is expected to play a critical role in the sustainable transformation of the industrial sector.

Nine CCUS power generation projects are currently in early development, according to the Global CCS Institute’s CO2RE database: four in China, two in Korea, and one each in the UK, Ireland and the Netherlands.

Global CCUS Projects — 2019

Measures to achieve the goal

The World Coal Association (WCA) outlines the actions required for greater international commitment to advancing CCUS technology:

How Acuity Knowledge Partners can help

Increasing awareness of CCT has led to heavy investment in the technology, with the US and Europe at the forefront. Industry experts believe that with the growing influence of impact investing, the future belongs to CCT. To make the CCT process more effective and efficient, industries that produce CO2, such as electric utilities, steel mills and cement plants, would have to follow the WCA’s suggestions. We at Acuity Knowledge Partners take pride in our energy-sector experts. We offer services such as project evolution, partnership search, market sizing, essential value chain support and financial research and analysis to established and new companies.

Originally published at


World Coal Association (WCA)

International Energy Agency (IEA)

About the Author

Vivek Mishra, Senior Associate, Business Research, has over four years of experience in delivering various market research projects by implementing secondary research, market forecasting, and data skills. He is graduated in Bachelor of Technology in Mechanical Engineering from Anand Engineering College, Agra. At Acuity Knowledge Partners, he works in Mining & Metals industry, with special focus on analyzing ‘Coal’ and ‘Uranium’ as a commodity across the globe.



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