According to the latest IEA report, the global energy consumption increased 2.3% in 2018, the largest increase in the last decade. Natural gas was the most consumed and accounted for 45% of the increase in total energy consumption.
As a result of this increase in energy consumption, CO2 emissions increased by 1.7% to reach 33.1 Gt in 2018. Nearly a third of these emissions come from coal plants, especially those in China.
It should be noted that China’s CO2 emissions increased by 2.5%, or 230 Mt, to reach 9.5 Gt. A jump of more than 5% in electricity generation from coal plants produced an increase in emissions. As a result, the decline in coal use outside the energy sector was completely compensated.
To compare … Belgium emitted between 87 and 103 Mt of CO2 per year between 2010 and 2015 (millions of tons, figures from the OECD).
Therefore… the increase in emissions from China due to coal in 2018 is more than the double of all Belgium’s CO2 emissions during the same year.