Coal miners' profits triple as demand grows

Many countries that once pledged to quit coal have turned back to it after Russia's invasion of Ukraine

The world’s 20 largest coal mining companies tripled their profits in 2022 to reach a total of more than $97bn due to recent turmoil in the energy market.

Many countries that once pledged to quit coal have turned back to it as a reliable source of heat and power as energy security concerns became a top priority following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Glencore came in at number one, with earnings from coal at $13.2bn in the 12 months ending on June 30; China Shenhua, which made $12.2bn during that time; and BHP, which brought in $9.5bn, mainly from production of metallurgical coal.

This news comes just a year after the United Nations' COP26 climate summit pledged to “phase out” coal, demand for the fossil fuel has instead increased, boosted by high gas prices and Europe’s energy crisis. According to the International Energy Agency, global coal demand rose 1.2%  to hit a record high in 2022.

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