May 28, 2019 - Energy & Environment

Britain approaches its 11th day without using coal for electricity

a slag heap at the entrance to Kellingley Colliery, the last deep coal mine operating in Britain near Knottingley, northern England

A slag heap at the entrance to Kellingley Colliery, northern England. Photo: Oli Scarff/AFP/Getty Images

The island of Great Britain is nearing 11 days without using coal in its electricity mix, by far the longest stretch since 1882, according to power system operator National Grid and other tracking services.

Why it matters: The new stretch, which beats the previous record of about a week without coal from early May, signals the region's relatively fast movement away from the fuel.

What's next: "[B]arring any operational issues, the forecast is looking good for a couple more days of #zerocoal," National Grid said on Twitter this morning as the streak hit 10 days and 18 hours.

Yes, but: Coal is hardly exiting the world stage as demand grows in parts of Asia. The IEA sees overall global demand rising slightly over the next 5 years.

Go deeper: A contrarian view of energy transition

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