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UN secretary general calls for end to all planned coal projects

March 04, 2021

The Guardian:

All planned coal projects around the world must be cancelled to end the “deadly addiction” to the most polluting fossil fuel, the UN secretary-general António Guterres said on Tuesday.

Phasing out coal from the electricity sector is the single most important step to tackle the climate crisis, he said. Guterres’s call came at the opening of a summit of the Powering Past Coal Alliance (PPCA), a group of governments and businesses committed to ending coal burning for power.

The PPCA was founded by the UK and Canada in 2017. The UK is on track to end coal burning in power plants in 2024, but it has come under recent pressure for allowing a new coalmine to go ahead in Cumbria, which will produce coking coal for use in steel making. The UK is hosting a vital UN climate summit, Cop26, in November.

The PPCA announced two new national members, Hungary and Uruguay. PPCA members commit to ending coal burning for power by 2030 in developed nations and reducing it by 80% globally.

“Today, I am calling on all governments, private companies and local authorities to take three steps,” said Guterres. “First, cancel all global coal projects in the pipeline and end the deadly addiction to coal. Second, end the international financing of coal plants and … third, jump-start a global effort to finally organise a just transition [for coal industry workers], going plant by plant if necessary.”

[Damian Carrington]

More: Cancel all planned coal projects globally to end ‘deadly addiction’, says UN chief

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