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Feature Article

Betting Wisely on Electricity’s Future

By Roger S. Conrad on Dec. 9, 2019

Cheap to mine, easy to burn and abundant almost everywhere: It’s easy to see why coal became the primary fuel for a century plus of global electrification.

In fact, up until very recently, demand growth was actually accelerating. The International Energy Agency reports worldwide consumption grew 73.5 percent from 1990 through 2015, more than twice as fast as oil usage.

No more. By 2030, North America and Western Europe will have shuttered the vast majority of coal-fired power plants. Resource rich Australia is on track to follow suit a decade or so later. And even the countries that have driven recent demand increases like China and India are moving quickly to alternatives.

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