G7 Commits To Coal Phase-Out By 2035, With Conditions

Swarajya Staff

May 03, 2024, 03:28 PM | Updated 03:49 PM IST

Uniper SE's coal-fired power station in Ratcliffe-on-Soar, U.K (Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg)
Uniper SE's coal-fired power station in Ratcliffe-on-Soar, U.K (Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg)

Energy ministers from the Group of Seven (G7) nations reached a consensus on Tuesday to phase out the utilisation of coal in power generation "during the first half of the 2030s" — but left the door open for those heavily reliant on coal to breach the deadline.

This agreement represents a significant step in addressing climate concerns for the G7 countries — namely the UK, US, Canada, France, Italy, Germany, and Japan — who had struggled to come to a consensus on coal phase-out despite years of discussions.

The G7 communiqué, issued after meetings in Torino, Italy, commits to "phase out existing unabated coal power generation in our energy systems during the first half of the 2030s."

The term "unabated coal" implies that countries may continue to use coal for electricity generation if they implement carbon-capture technology in their power plants to prevent emissions from being released into the atmosphere.

However, the statement also includes a provision allowing for "a timeline consistent with keeping a limit of 1.5°C temperature rise within reach, in line with countries’ net-zero pathways."

The caveat was included in the final wording of the communique to grant room for manoeuvre to Germany and Japan, whose coal-fired plants produce more than one-fourth of their total electricity, diplomatic sources told Reuters.

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