Coal Round meets to discuss Energy Union

Speakers Brendan DEVLIN, Marek GRÓBARCZYK, Jerzy BUZEK and Christian EHLER

Mr. Marek GRÓBARCZYK MEP, rapporteur for the Energy Union dossier and Mr. Brendan DEVLIN, Advisor in DG Energy, joined Prof. Jerzy BUZEK MEP and Dr. Christian EHLER MEP, co-chairs of the 25th Coal Round.

Dr SCHMITZ putting forward industry’s arguments

Prof. BUZEK remarked that “low emissions”, not “decarbonisation”, was the objective for the energy sector. Dr EHLER expressed his concern that the European Commission failed to address coal use in its Energy Union communication.

Participants at the Coal Round

Rapporteur GRÓBARCZYK believed that Energy Union should be supported by three pillars: conventional and unconventional sources, nuclear and renewables in a mix that keeps prices under control. He concluded by offering his support to coal and for keeping coal in the European energy mix.


EURACOAL position paper on proposed amendments for European energy security strategy

The widespread modernisation of Europe’s coal-fired power plants offers a low-cost route to greenhouse gas emission reductions through improved efficiency. Other co-benefits include cleaner plants with lower emissions of conventional pollutants. Perhaps one of the most important benefits that comes from the modernisation of coal-fired power plants is the avoidance of a further “dash for gas” that would be neither affordable nor strategically desirable. Energy supply is closely entwined with current global tensions and the EU needs to think carefully about how it invests for the future.

Please see at the following link the amendments suggested to the European Parliament by EURACOAL for the European Energy Security Strategy.

EURACOAL elects new President and Vice Presidents

The European Association for Coal and Lignite (EURACOAL) today elected Dr. Zygmunt Łukaszczyk as its new President. He succeeds Mr. Paweł Smoleń who is now a partner responsible for energy and resources at Deloitte Business Consulting S.A. Dr. Łukaszczyk, a Polish national and Chairman of the Board at Katowicki Holding Węglowy S.A. (KHW), brings his extensive experience of the coal industry and policy issues to the Association which is the “voice of coal” in Europe.

Prof. Franz-Josef Wodopia, representing the German hard coal sector, and Mr. Nigel Yaxley, representing UK coal importers, were both re-elected as Vice Presidents and are joined by newly elected Mr. Vladimír Budinský, representing the Czech Association of Employers in Mining Industry (ZSDNP).

Please click on the following link to see the full press release.

Coal: fuel for the 21st century

Exploiting natural resources creates jobs and adds to economic wealth. It always has and always will. In the EU, the most abundant energy resource is coal. In these times of austerity and high unemployment, the EU can look forward to a future fuelled by coal, not dirty old coal of the past, but with modern clean coal technologies fit for the 21st century and in use today in Europe.

Please download the full publication at the following link.

International Coal Dialogue “Quo vadis Ukraine?”

The aim of the International Coal Dialogue was to explore with EURACOAL member DTEK what steps Ukraine is taking to secure its coal supply. The meeting was organised in co-operation with the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC), specifically with the Consultative Commission on Industrial Change (CCMI).

Until now, Ukraine has been self-sufficient in coal. In 2013, the country produced over 60 million tonnes and production was maintained during the first half of 2014. However, since June 2014, coal output has been decimated by separatist fighting in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions. Production from 66 coal mines has been lost, with just 60 left in production today. MEP Andrej Plenković, Chair of the EU-Ukraine Delegation, lived through war in Croatia and warned of the destructive consequence if the Minsk ceasefire was not respected. He called on the European Commission to consolidate the peace process.

A particularly serious problem highlighted at the meeting was the sourcing of anthracite on the international market. High-quality local anthracite is used at around half of Ukraine’s thermal power plants. Germany is a producer, but there are few others – Russia being the biggest outside of China. However, the maximum monthly supply from Russia is perhaps 700-750 thousand tonnes – not enough to replace the two million tonnes lost.

Please see the full report and presentations at the following link.