Coal bearing the brunt of global decline in electricity demand FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Bloomberg:As silent factories and deserted offices hobble demand for electricity worldwide, the biggest loser is coal.In the U.S., coal’s share of power generation has dropped more than 5 percentage points since February on the nation’s biggest grid while output from natural gas plants and wind farms held steady. In Europe, it’s down 2 points. Even in China and India, where coal still dominates, it’s losing market share during the pandemic.It comes down to cost. Coal power is more expensive than gas and renewables in many places and, hence, is the first fuel priced out of the market when demand falls. Its plunging use amid the lockdowns is a boon for efforts to fight climate change, hastening a shift that was already underway to weed out the dirtiest fossil fuel.In the U.S., coal is now supplying just 14% of power on the grid serving 65 million people from Illinois to New Jersey. That’s down from almost 20% in February, according to a Bloomberg analysis of data from the grid operator, PJM Interconnection LLC. It’s the only major fuel to slump.In Europe, coal’s share of power generation has dipped to 12%, from 14% a year ago, according to data from Wartsila Oyj, the Finnish energy technology company. The decline is particularly sharp in Germany, where electricity from hard coal and lignite, sometimes called brown coal, plunged to 18% of net generation in the first two weeks April. One year ago, they accounted for 35%.In India, coal’s share of the power mix slipped to 65% from 71% in the month since Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced lockdowns to contain the outbreak. The country’s coal imports for power plants in March fell 28% from a year earlier. The share from renewables, nuclear and hydropower rose. And in China, thermal power output, which is mostly from coal, slumped 8.2% in the first quarter while solar and wind gained.[Will Wade, Chris Martin and Mathew Carr]More: In global electricity slump, coal is the big loser
Steven Gerrard’s mistake allowed Demba Ba to deal a huge blow to Liverpool’s Premier League title hopes and give a weakened Chelsea side a famous win at Anfield.Gerrard’s slip on the stroke of half-time allowed Ba to race through unopposed on Simon Mignolet’s goal and slot the ball home to give the visitors a lead they never relinquished.Liverpool poured forward but were repeatedly frustrated by Chelsea’s massed defensive ranks and ran out of ideas long before Willian sprinted upfield to tap a second into an empty net at the death.Brendan Rodgers’ men are now just two points clear of Chelsea at the top of the table, while the result also provides a huge boost to third-placed Manchester City’s hopes of catching Brendan Rodgers’ side.Much was made before the game of Jose Mourinho’s team selection three days ahead of the second leg of Chelsea’s Champions League semi-final against Atletico Madrid.The Portuguese had hinted at fielding a weakened side and did just that on Sunday, leaving Gary Cahill and Willian on the bench and handing a Premier League debut to 20-year-old defender Tomas Kalas. With Frank Lampard, John Obi Mikel and Nemanja Matic – all unavailable for the game with Atletico – screening the back four, Chelsea were set up with the objective of frustrating their opponents and the gameplan worked perfectly as Liverpool struggled to create any clear-cut opportunities, despite enjoying a greater share of possession.As a result, the leaders drew a blank for the first time in 26 league games and were condemned to their maiden top-flight defeat in 2014, having last been beaten in December’s reverse meeting with Chelsea.Ashley Cole fired an early warning shot for the visitors in the sixth minute, with a fizzing 25-yard effort that Mignolet parried away low to his left, while Philippe Coutinho volleyed into the side-netting from a tight angle at the other end.Cole was involved again in the 14th minute, this time clearing off the line after the ball had ricocheted off Mikel, before Sakho scooped Luis Suarez’s driven ball over the crossbar from six yards out.The hosts continued to enjoy the greater share of possession and Suarez curled an effort a yard over the bar from the edge of the box four minutes before the interval. For all Liverpool’s dominance, they fell behind in the third minute of stoppage time at the end of the first half.Moments after Kalas had glanced a free header wide from a corner, Gerrard’s slip allowed Ba to race clear and the Senegalese striker kept his cool to slot underneath Mignolet.Liverpool tested Mark Schwarzer for the first time in the 59th minute, the Australian getting down low to his left to keep out Joe Allen’s first-time volley from just outside the area.Andre Schurrle brought a similar stop out of Mignolet three minutes later, while Gerrard saw an effort from distance comfortably held by Schwarzer.Liverpool continued to press hard for an equaliser, Schwarzer tipping Suarez’s rasping drive over the bar in stoppage time, but as the hosts pushed on they were left exposed at the back and Willian had the simple task of finding an empty net after Torres’ unselfish square ball.