November 17, 2017 Read More →

More Countries, States Join Pact to End Coal Use for Electricity Generation

Reuters:

At least 15 countries have joined an international alliance to phase out coal from power generation before 2030, delegates at U.N. climate talks in Bonn said on Thursday

Britain, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Italy, France, the Netherlands, Portugal, Belium, Switzerland, New Zealand, Ethiopia, Mexico and the Marshall Islands have joined the Powering Past Coal Alliance, delegates said.

The alliance aims to have 50 members by the next U.N. climate summit in 2018 to be held in Poland’s Katowice, one of Europe’s most polluted cities.

But some of the world’s biggest coal users, such as China, the United States, Germany and Russia, have not signed up.

Powering Past Coal comes just days after U.S. administration officials, along with energy company representatives, led a side event at the talks to promote “fossil fuels and nuclear power in climate mitigation.”

The alliance was kicked off by Britain, Canada and the Marshall Islands, who urged other nations to join them in a letter seen by Reuters on Wednesday.

A source close to the matter said signatories to the alliance so far had been at least a dozen, in addition to some U.S. states, Canadian provinces and businesses.

“It is a rebuke to (President) Donald Trump from the UK and Canada, two of America’s closest allies, that his obsession for dirty energy will not spread,” said Mohamed Adow, international climate lead at Christian Aid.

Since signing the Paris Agreement in 2015, which aims to wean the world off fossil fuels, several countries have made national plans to phase out coal from their power supply mix.

More: At least 15 states join global alliance to phase out coal by 2030

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The Hill:

A group of 19 countries and a handful of provinces and states, including Washington, is vowing to phase out their use of coal for electricity generation as part of the United Nations climate conference.

Officials announced the new coalition, called the Powering Past Coal Alliance, on Thursday at the annual U.N. climate change conference in Bonn, Germany. They said they will look to more than double their membership by next year’s meeting.

The countries — led by the United Kingdom and Canada — account for just a small percentage of global coal consumption, though several of the nations in the alliance rely on coal for a large amount of their electricity generation.

“Reducing global coal consumption should be a vital and urgent priority for all countries and states. Unabated coal is the dirtiest, most polluting way of generating electricity,” said Claire Perry, the U.K.’s minister for climate change and industry.

“The Powering Past Coal Alliance will signal to the world that the time of coal has passed. The UK is committed to completely phasing out unabated coal-fire power generation no later than 2025 and we hope to inspire others to follow suit.”

Countries involved in the alliance include Costa Rica, Denmark, Italy, France, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand and others.

The only U.S. entity involved in the alliance is Washington state. Its governor, Jay Inslee (D), has attended the Bonn conference this week.

More: Countries, states, provinces vow to phase out coal use

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