According to Statistics Finland's preliminary data, the consumption of hard coal decreased by 35% in 2020 when compared with the previous year.
The consumption of hard coal as a fuel in the generation of electricity and heat amounted to 1.56 million tonnes, corresponding to 40 petajoule in energy content. In all, 64% less hard coal was consumed in 2020 than on average during this millennium.
The use of hard coal decreased most in the third quarter, when consumption was 38% lower than in the year before. In the fourth quarter, 35% less hard coal was consumed than in the corresponding period of the year before. Consumption decreased quite evenly in all quarters of the year.
Compared with one year ago, consumption contracted most in January and the decrease was lowest in April and December.
The consumption of hard coal decreased especially in plants that principally produce electricity and heat, In recent years, the use of hard coal has completely discontinued in some plants’ boilers. The decrease in the consumption of coal is affected by the ban on the use of coal for energy, which will enter into force in 2029. The warm weather in 2020 has also contributed to the decrease in consumption.
Energy consumption in Finland typically fluctuates seasonally. Some of the fluctuation in the consumption of hard coal is also explained by the natural variation in the need for electricity and heat between the summer and winter seasons.
The difference between individual statistical reference years can be explained by variations in the demand for heating energy caused by the weather. However, a declining trend can be detected in the consumption of hard coal for several years. The use of fossil fuels has been replaced by renewable energy.
At the end of December, the stocks of coal amounted to 2.0 million tonnes. Compared with one year back, the stocks were 12% lower.