G7 agrees to end new gov't support for coal power by end of 2021

by Reuters
Sunday, 13 June 2021 14:42 GMT

Power lines are pictured in front of the Weisweiler lignite power plant of German utility and energy supplier RWE near the German city of Aachen, January 28, 2020. REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay

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Rich nations vow to focus on other technologies, including carbon capture, to help speed up the transition away from coal

CARBIS BAY, England, June 13 (Reuters) - The Group of Seven nations on Sunday pledged to rapidly scale up technologies and policies that accelerate the transition away from unabated coal capacity, including ending new government support for coal power by the end of this year.

The countries, in a communique following their summit in Britain, confirmed pledges to increase climate finance contributions as part of efforts to reduce emissions that contribute to climate change and help a move toward cleaner energy, although climate groups said firm cash promises and other details were missing.

"Coal power generation is the single biggest cause of greenhouse gas emissions," the seven nations - the United States, Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy and Japan - said, adding "continued global investment in unabated coal power generation is incompatible with keeping 1.5°C within reach."

"We stress that international investments in unabated coal must stop now and we commit now to an end to new direct government support for unabated international thermal coal power generation by the end of 2021," they said.

U.S. President Joe Biden, speaking after the summit, noted a commitment of up to $2 billion "to support developing countries as they transition away from unabated coal-fired power."

The nations, in their statement, vowed to focus on other technologies, including carbon capture, to help speed up the transition away from coal.

"We will focus on accelerating progress on electrification and batteries, hydrogen, carbon capture, usage and storage, zero emission aviation and shipping, and for those countries that opt to use it, nuclear power," the communique said.

(Reporting by Elizabeth Piper and Susan Heavey; Editing by Michael Holden and Daniel Wallis)