I found some Anthracite coal. I know a coal bed of this quality is worth money? I also know that there is a "no pun intended" carbon foot print if I decide to share my findings to others.

Economics wise would the coal be worth more now or 20 years from now at our current consumption?

I could not find a SE for Ethics, but I wander is this something I should buy and sit one for environmental sake?


It's highly likely that the coal will be pretty much worthless in 20 years from now.

That's because we've got far more fossil fuels than we can burn safely: the negative externalities far exceed the consumer's private benefit.

The world is on the edge of rejecting coal forever. Several countries have already done so, and that number is growing steadily.

  • $\begingroup$ Could it be used for other things not for burning? $\endgroup$
    – Muze
    Jan 18 '18 at 21:27
  • $\begingroup$ It's not really useful for much else. $\endgroup$
    – 410 gone
    Jan 18 '18 at 21:28

I agree with EnergyNumbers. A few more points on coal however: the value and investment can vary slightly depending on the region of the world you are on. Australia still as significant interest in coal with several mines in place and new mines being planned, such as Adani. Coal investments, here in Australia, are under extreme pressure from environmental groups and citizens in general.

China and Australia still have a high interest in coal, due to existing investments which will last 10-20 years more. The energy plants in Australia are mostly coal based, and the steel production in China uses coal extensively (currently). Even in Australia, though, the end of the coal era is discussed already.

The major use of coal is energy (through burning it). There are other uses, but I don't think these could sustain the industry as it is now - the demand would be much smaller. For possible uses, check here: https://www.worldcoal.org/coal/uses-coal

Finally, ethically you shouldn't invest in Coal. Looking at ethical or sustainable funds do not have coal industries in their portfolios.


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