The Coal Problem in Great Britain and the World
FROM 1850 when the annual production was around 50 million tons, coal output in Great Britain expanded rapidly to 225 million tons in 1900 and 287 million tons in 1913. However, during the First World War, countries which had previously bought large quantities of coal from Britain sought other sources of supply or developed their own coal resources. Thus from the record figure of 73 million tons exported in 1913, Britain's coal exports declined until in 1938 they stood at 39 million tons. An important reason for this was the development of oil engines for marine propulsion. Today, nearly ail the navies and mercantile shipping in the world have turned to oil engines. Sometime in the future, however, it is reasonable to expect nuclear power to replace oil.