WHY TRACK COAL?
IF YOU CAN'T MEASURE IT, YOU CAN'T MANAGE IT.
- MICHAEL R. BLOOMBERG
UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Climate Ambition and Solutions
Founder of Bloomberg LP and Bloomberg Philanthropies
Access to free and transparent data on the status of coal plants around the world is essential to accelerating and tracking the countdown to a clean energy future.
Led by Bloomberg Philanthropies, in partnership with Powering Past Coal Alliance, and powered by leading data and research organizations, the Bloomberg Global Coal Countdown provides a look into our progress away from coal, highlighting the countries that are leading the way.
EXPLORE THE DATA
BLOOMBERG GLOBAL COAL COUNTDOWN DASHBOARD
To use the dashboard, select a country or click on an individual coal plant to learn more about its status.
A guide to the other panels:
Top Left Panels: Get a current snapshot of global capacity and coal generation units remaining around the world, and compared to 2020.
Bottom Left Panel: Toggle between views of the top 10 countries by their current operational capacity vs. their current retired capacity.
Center Panel: Explore the state of coal power worldwide—at the global, country, and plant levels. Type in your zip code or browse by region.
Top Right Panel: Move the sliding bar to track global progress on reducing global coal capacity over time, beginning in 2000.
Bottom Right Panel: See the emissions reductions needed to stay within the temperature limits science demands to avoid the worst impacts of climate change.
This website is best viewed full-screen using the latest version of Google Chrome. We will continue to update the website for further compatibility in the future.
Details about our data sourcing and methodology can be viewed here
JOIN US AS WE COUNT DOWN TO:
A CLEANER PLANET
Emissions from coal are the single-largest contributor to climate change and source of carbon pollution worldwide. A future without coal emissions means a world with less pollution, cleaner air, and a healthier, more resilient planet.
Air pollution from coal-fired power plants is linked to negative health outcomes including asthma, heart disease, cancer, and more. Moving away from coal will save hundreds of thousands of lives globally and improve overall public health.
CLEANER, AFFORDABLE ENERGY
Coal is no longer economically competitive. In more and more regions of the world, solar and wind power have become the cheapest form of power—making the transition from coal to clean renewables an economic inevitability.
A SAFER, COAL‑FREE FUTURE
As we increasingly experience extreme weather and climate disasters, scientists have been very clear: to avoid the worst impacts of climate change, we must phase out coal worldwide. The latest analyses emphasize that this should be completed by 2030 in industrialized countries, and by 2040 everywhere else.
MEETING OUR PARIS AGREEMENT GOALS
In order to meet the Paris Agreement goals, the clean energy transition must be at least 4x faster than it is at present—and powering past coal is one of the quickest ways to help get us there
A CLEAR PATH TO MAKE COAL HISTORY
A healthier future is being built today through global collaboration around three key pillars:
WHO IS DOING THE COUNTING?
The Bloomberg Global Coal Countdown is powered by the world’s leading data and research organizations:
GLOBAL ENERGY MONITOR
GLOBAL COAL PLANT TRACKER
Global Energy Monitor studies the evolving international energy landscape. Their Global Coal Plant Tracker provides information on coal-fired power units from around the world generating 30 megawatts and above.
CENTER FOR GLOBAL SUSTAINABILITY
STATE OF GLOBAL COAL POWER
State of Global Coal Power is an interactive website with country-by-country data that tracks the global coal phase-out and quantifies the emissions impacts of new, existing, and retired coal plants.
CENTRE FOR RESEARCH ON ENERGY AND CLEAN AIR
CREA is an independent research organization focused on revealing the trends, causes, and health impacts of air pollution. Using scientific data, research and evidence, CREA supports the efforts of governments, companies and campaigning organizations worldwide in their efforts to move towards clean energy and clean air.
ABOUT THE COUNTDOWN
Led by Bloomberg Philanthropies, in partnership with the Powering Past Coal Alliance, and powered by leading data and research organizations, the Bloomberg Global Coal Countdown is the go-to online resource to track the world’s progress toward phasing out coal.
The Bloomberg Global Coal Countdown aggregates data from organizations including Global Energy Monitor, the Center for Global Sustainability at the University of Maryland School of Public Policy, and the Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air. The website counts down the world’s remaining coal plant units as decision makers across governments and the private sector work together to accelerate the transition to a clean-energy future.
In compiling the dashboard data, we have made the following assumptions in our methodology, as explained below:
Our definition of a coal plant’s status is based on Global Energy Monitor’s status definitions and we have mapped each status to the following for our purposes:
– Operational: Operating
– Construction: Construction
– Planned: Announced, Pre-Permit, Permitted
– Halted: Shelved, Cancelled
– Retired: Retired, Mothballed
Coal plant age numbers are provided only for plants that fall under the Operating and Retired statuses.
Capacity values are either presented in megawatts (MW) or gigawatts (GW) of capacity. 1 GW is the equivalent of 1,000 MW.
Some units lack a “Year” value but still have relevant capacity and operational data. These units are included in our aggregate total calculations but omitted from our time-series calculations. Other units have been completely omitted from our dashboard database because there is significant data missing regarding their operational status, retirement year, location data, and capacity value.
We use Global Energy Monitor’s methodology on calculating CO2 emissions in compiling our dashboard.
Our data and scenarios of the GHG emission pathways from unabated coal power generation is based on the Global Change Analysis Model (GCAM, jgcri.github.io/gcam-doc/), provided by the Center for Global Sustainability at the University of Maryland, and the plant-level data from the Global Coal Plant Tracker by Global Energy Monitor.
Definition and assumptions for the four scenarios are:
– No Action: GHG emission pathways from unabated coal power generation based on the project pipeline in 2016, assuming continued growth to 2050, and no climate mitigation action being taken
– Current: GHG emission pathways from unabated coal power generation based on the current project pipeline in 2021, assuming continued growth to 2050, and with current levels of climate mitigation action
– 2 °C: GHG emission pathways from unabated coal power generation consistent with limiting the rise in global average temperature to well-below-2°C, under an increasing global carbon price on the energy system to achieve the end-of-century radiative forcing at 2.7 Wm-2 (10% of the carbon price is passed on to the land sector).
– 1.5 °C: GHG emission pathways from unabated coal power generation consistent with limiting the rise in global average temperature to 1.5°C, under an increasing global carbon price on the energy system to achieve the end-of-century radiative forcing at 2.0 Wm-2 (10% of the carbon price is passed on to the land sector).
The 1.5 °C and 2 °C scenarios are consistent with latest IPCC results.1
1 Comparison of policy scenarios to the IPCC 1.5 °C database. The dark lines are GCAM scenarios used on the website. The lighter lines are scenarios from the IAMC 1.5 °C Scenario Explorer. The light blue lines indicate scenarios categorized as “Below 1.5 °C”, “1.5 °C low overshoot”, and “1.5 °C high overshoot”; the light green lines indicate scenarios categorized as “Lower 2 °C” and “Higher 2 °C” in the database.
We use the following calculation to calculate a coal plant’s thermal efficiency:
thermal_efficiency = 100 / (heat_rate_btu_per_kwh * (0.293071 / 1000))
The value is computed as a percentage and is rounded to one decimal place.