Just four months after world leaders agreed in Glasgow to back away from coal amid a growing climate crisis, the dirtiest hydrocarbon is suddenly the hottest commodity.

As Western powers and many companies pull back from business with Russia over its invasion of Ukraine, ships that would normally head to Asia after loading coal in South Africa and Australia are sailing to Europe instead, to feed the continent’s need for energy.

The price tag for coal has soared past a more than 200-year high and is tipped to potentially reach $500 per tonne.