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Mastering the Commodities Markets by Francesca Taylor

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COAL AND CARBON ISSUES

Coal is the single most important fuel for producing electricity globally – but it is also the most controversial. As the greatest source of carbon dioxide of all fuels, environmentalists say it is critical to reduce the world’s dependence on it in order to stem global warming.

As the economies of Asia, particularly China, rebounded from the 2008 global slowdown, their imports of coal soared, pushing prices up. By 2010, China was using half of the 6 billion tons of coal burned each year, and the price had doubled over five years.

In a few places, particularly South Africa, gasification of coal produces synthetic fuels. The Fischer–Tropsch synthetic fuel process was first used on a large scale by Germany to produce fuels ...

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