Due to the European Union’s climate neutrality plans, the coal industry is under increasing pressure, with tens of thousands of jobs in the industry now under threat.
By 2030, 160,000 jobs related to coal mining or coal power plants could disappear across the EU. In the Czech Republic, 18,000 are expected to be lost.
The findings are based on the study of the “Europe in data” portal. The most affected region in Europe will be Silesia, Poland, where up to 41,000 jobs may disappear. In Poland, where most of the electricity is produced from coal, nearly 100,000 jobs will be affected by the EU’s climate measures.
Czech coal sources and heating plants may have problems after the introduction of stricter environmental standards that will come into effect after 2021. They mostly do not meet the requirements, so investment in them may not even return.
Increasing the price of emission allowances is crucial for the coal business. Certificates authorizing the release of one ton of carbon dioxide emissions into the air are being sold for €25, which is five times more than at the beginning of 2017. The profitability of coal sources and, in particular, heating plants is often on the brink and some are already at a loss.
“There are other jobs related to coal in the power industry, equipment supply companies, services or research, and development sectors. There are around 215,000 such indirect jobs in the EU,” said Jan Krupička, an analyst from Europe in data.
According to him, the advantage is that the disappearance of jobs will be gradual, and people will have a chance to find employment in other fields. For instance, the demand for precious metals is increasing. In the energy sector, biomass power plants and heating plants offer a similar type of work.