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  • Roger S. Conrad

“Reducing coal consumption is an incremental process.” That’s how China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman put it, explaining the change in the COP26 Climate Summit’s language for coal from “phase out” to “phase down.”

Without a doubt, support for de-carbonizing energy has never been greater on the part of governments, investors and industry. But oil, natural gas and coal also currently provide more than 80 percent of the world’s still-rising energy needs.

Even “phasing down” is going to take decades, trillions of dollars of investment and some major technological advances. And so long as the world relies on fossil fuels—as it almost certainly will for decades—whatever discourages investment in them will drive up prices.

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    Experts

    • Elliott H. Gue

      Founder and Chief Analyst: Capitalist Times and Energy & Income Advisor

    • Roger S. Conrad

      Founder and Chief Analyst: Capitalist Times and Energy & Income Advisor