Trends in the consumption of hard coal in Polish households compared to EU households

Journal title

Gospodarka Surowcami Mineralnymi - Mineral Resources Management




No 3

Publication authors

Divisions of PAS

Nauki Techniczne


<jats:title>Abstract</jats:title><jats:p>Due to the important role of hard coal in the Polish residential sector, the article traced the changes that have occurred in the use of this fuel in the European Union and in Poland in the years 1990–2014.</jats:p><jats:p>Throughout the European Union, hard coal has an important place in the structure of primary energy consumption. In the years 1990–2014, primary energy consumption in the European Union (calculated for all 28 Member States) has changed between 1507 and 1722 million toe. Between 2014 and 1990, there was a decrease of primary energy consumption, and the average rate of decline amounted to −0.2%. According to Council Directive 2013/12/EU, by the year 2020 energy consumption throughout the EU is expected to be no more than 1483 Mtoe of primary energy, and already in 2014 total primary energy consumption in the EU28 was higher than assumed by this target by only about 24 million toe (2%).</jats:p><jats:p>Actions taken to protect the climate result in reducing the consumption of hard coal in the European Union. Between 1990 and 2014, the consumption of hard coal decreased by 41% (a decrease of 126 million toe), and the average rate of decline in consumption of this fuel amounted to −2.1%.</jats:p><jats:p>Throughout the EU, households are not as significant a consumer of hard coal, as in Poland. Although EU28’s coal consumption in this sector in the years 1990 to 2014 varied between 6.5–15.8 million toe, its share in the overall consumption of this fuel usually maintained at around 3–5%.</jats:p><jats:p>The changing fuel mix, closing of mines or gradual extinction of coal mining, environmental policy of the individual countries meant that coal has lost its position in some of them.</jats:p><jats:p>Analyzing the structure of hard coal consumption by households in the EU28 countries in the years 1900 to 2014, one may notice that the leaders are those countries that have their own coal mines. Due to the structure of consumption of hard coal by the customers, the article discussed two countries: Poland and Great Britain in greater detail. In 1990, Poland (50%) and Britain (18%) were close leaders, and twenty-five years later, only Poland has remained in first place (84%) and Great Britain has fallen to fourth place (4%).</jats:p><jats:p>Between 2014 and 1990, the consumption of hard coal by the British residential sector decreased by 88% to only 0.3 million toe. In the case of Poland, it admittedly decreased by 6%, but still exceeds 6 million toe. The decrease in hard coal consumption in Great Britain was largely a consequence of The Clean Air Act introduced in 1956. In Britain, the process of replacing coal with other fuels (mostly natural gas) lasted several decades. Domestic coal was replaced with another mainly domestic resource – natural gas which ensured the security of its supply.</jats:p><jats:p>The article also describes the households in the European Union and in Poland. The overall housing stock was taken into account, together with the distribution of population according to the degree of urbanization. Regulations that have a significant impact on the consumption of energy in the European Union were also discussed.</jats:p>


Komitet Zrównoważonej Gospodarki Surowcami Mineralnymi PAN ; Instytut Gospodarki Surowcami Mineralnymi i Energią PAN




ISSN 0860-0953