Monday, July 16, 2007

Coal Mine Fires Produce 3% of the World's CO2 Emissions

The Wrong Fire
Diana Furchgott-Roth for the New York Sun

It is astounding that with all the expensive proposals to combat global warming no one is discussing reducing global carbon emissions by putting out mine fires. Although putting out fires in America would not have a significant effect, putting out fires in China and India would.

I had not heard of the extent of this problem until I did the post below. Now I see the Sun had the story Friday.

China loses between 100 and 200 million tons of coal a year — a significant fraction of its production of 2.26 billion tons — to mine fires, according to Holland's International Institute for Geo-Information Science and Earth Observation. This results in carbon dioxide emissions in a range of between 560 and 1,120 million metric tons, equaling 50% to 100% of all U.S. carbon dioxide emissions from gasoline.

It may well be less costly for us to put out the Chinese mine fires than to cut emissions at home.

Second to China is India, where mine fires burn between 3 and 10 million tons of coal annually, with emissions of 15 to 51 million metric tons. Emissions will only grow in the future as China and India expand production of coal to fuel their thriving economies.

The WSJ's Energy Roundup has a teaser from the Journal re: China.
China Backs Away From Pollution Reporting