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Over 40 Countries Pledge at U.N. Climate Summit to End Use of Coal Power

Over 40 Countries Pledge at U.N. Climate Summit to End Use of Coal Power thumbnail

GLASGOW — More than 40 countries pledged to phase out coal, the dirtiest fossil fuel, in a deal announced Thursday at the United Nations climate summit that prompted Alok Sharma, the head of the conference, to proclaim “the end of coal is in sight.”

But several of the biggest coal consumers were notably absent from the accord, including China and India, which together burn roughly two-thirds of the world’s coal, as well as Australia, the world’s 11th-biggest user of coal and a major exporter.

The United States, which still generates about one-fifth of its electricity from coal, also did not sign the pledge.

The new pact includes 23 countries that for the first time have promised to stop building and issuing permits for new coal plants at home and to eventually shift away from using the fuel. Among them are five of the world’s top 20 power-generating countries: Poland, Indonesia, South Korea, Vietnam and Ukraine.

The decision by the United States to abstain appeared to be driven by American politics.

President Biden’s domestic agenda is split between two pieces of major legislation that have been pending on Capitol Hill and that hinge on the support of Senator Joe Manchin III, Democrat of West Virginia. Mr. Manchin’s state is rich in coal and gas, the senator has financial ties to the coal industry and he is sharply opposed to any policy that would harm fossil fuels.

Two administration officials in Glasgow said discussions with the British government over the pledge to end coal stretched into Wednesday night, with the United States arguing in favor of an exception for coal plants that have technology to capture and store carbon dioxide. (Only one such plant has been built in the United States to date, and it ceased operating this year.)

Ultimately, though, U.S. officials decided that signing the pledge could anger Mr. Manchin, according to the officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to publicly discuss the negotiations. A spokeswoman for Mr. Manchin did not respond to a request for comment.

The use of coal power in the United States peaked in 2007 and is fast declining, replaced by cheaper natural gas, wind and solar power.

Image

Credit…Alastair Grant/Associated Press

Coal is the single biggest source of planet-warming carbon dioxide emissions worldwide and ending its use is a major issue at the Glasgow summit.

Germany’s environment minister, Svenja Schulze, said ending coal is “essential” to keeping the average global temperature from rising more than 1.5 degrees Celsius, or 2.7 degrees Fahrenheit, compared to preindustrial levels. That’s the threshold beyond which many scientists say the planet will experience catastrophic effects from heat waves, droughts, wildfires and flooding. The planet has already warmed about 1.1 degrees Celsius.

To meet that goal of 1.5 degrees Celsius, wealthy countries would have to replace virtually all coal, oil and gas power plants with wind, solar or nuclear power by 2035, according to the International Energy Agency. And by 2040, all of the world’s remaining coal plants would have to be shuttered or fitted with technology to capture their carbon emissions and bury them underground, the agency said.

“In the near future we will have left behind all fossil fuels and live in a new and sustainable energy world based on renewable energy,” Ms. Schulze said.

Some environmental groups cautioned that the agreement was vague on key details, such as exactly when countries will end their use of the fuel. The statement only says that major economies commit to phasing out coal power “in the 2030s (or as soon as possible thereafter),” while the rest of the world would phase out coal by around the 2040s.

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Credit…David Maurice Smith for The New York Times

That “offers a loophole,” said Jennifer Morgan, executive director of Greenpeace International. “This is one more nail in the coffin of coal, but only one, and the coffin is not yet sealed,” Ms. Morgan added.

Underscoring the vagueness of the pledge, Anna Moskwa, Poland’s climate and environmental minister, said on Twitter Thursday that the deal allowed Poland to depart from coal by 2049. Poland currently gets 70 percent of its electricity from coal and has often resisted European proposals to shift more rapidly away from fossil fuels.

The Biden administration did join an agreement on Thursday to end financing for “unabated” oil, gas and coal in other countries by the end of next year. Unabated refers to power plants that burn fossil fuels and discharge the pollution directly into the air, without any attempt to capture the emissions.

That agreement is expected to significantly help steer public financing from multilateral development funders, such as the World Bank, away from fossil fuels. The 25 countries and entities in that pact, which include Italy, Canada and Denmark, have promised to prioritize support for low and zero-carbon energy like wind, solar and geothermal.

The decision to stop financing overseas fossil fuel development, paired with investments in green energy, is “really significant,” said Rachel Kyte of the Fletcher School at Tufts University.

“If we were just saying no to brown energy, then the political tensions between developing countries and developed countries would just escalate,” she said.

Republicans in the United States criticized the Biden administration’s pledge to end oil, gas and coal financing — noting the absence from the agreements of China, Japan and South Korea, some of the world’s biggest backers of foreign oil and gas projects.

“This agreement opens the door for China & Russia to fund the same production, but with their nonexistent environmental standards,” Senator Bill Cassidy, Republican of Louisiana, wrote on Twitter. “Patting yourself on the back and pretending to make a difference does nothing if it only leads to higher global emissions.”

Others noted the move could easily be reversed by a future administration.

“If there’s no law that would lock in a new administration in, I don’t know how the U.S. would be bound to uphold it,” said George David Banks, who served as former President Donald J. Trump’s international energy adviser.

Image

Credit…Stefani Reynolds for The New York Times

The promise to end coal comes as coal consumption is making a resurgence globally after years of steady decline. This year, coal consumption worldwide is expected to grow by 5.7 percent as the global economy rebounds from the coronavirus pandemic and is now just below its peak set in 2014, according to new data published Thursday by the Global Carbon Project. China’s government recently ordered coal companies to increase their mining output to manage an electricity shortage that has led to rolling blackouts nationwide.

The World Coal Association did not respond to a request for comment about the new announcement but earlier this week said efforts to eliminate coal ignored the fact that coal “remains a critical to energy supply in 80 countries and the livelihood of more than 790 million people who have no access to reliable and affordable power.”

Some of those countries signed the pledge. Ukraine, the third biggest consumer of coal in Europe, said Wednesday that it would aim to end coal use by 2035. Chile, which has previously pledged to close all of its remaining coal plants by 2040, said it would speed up its timeline.

The pledge would require some nations to make major changes. Vietnam, for example, would have to significantly revise recent plans to double its coal capacity by 2030.

Developing countries are likely to require outside financial help to wean themselves off coal, which has long been prized as a cheap source of energy for factories and homes. Indonesia, which signed the pledge, had earlier said it could phase out its coal-fired power plants by 2040 but only if it gets financial aid. The country is the world’s eighth-largest emitter and gets roughly two-thirds of its electricity from coal.

At the Glasgow summit, financiers and development banks have so far pledged roughly $20 billion to help developing countries transition away from coal, including $8.5 billion from the United States and several European governments to help coal-reliant South Africa shift to cleaner energy. The Asian Development Bank also launched a new fund that will buy coal power plants in Asia in order to shut them early, although some critics have questioned how effective that plan will be.

One question left unanswered in the coal pledge is whether countries may turn instead to natural gas to meet their energy needs. Gas produces about half the carbon dioxide as coal when burned for fuel but is still a major source of greenhouse gas emissions.

NY Times



9 Comments on "Over 40 Countries Pledge at U.N. Climate Summit to End Use of Coal Power"

  1. makati1 on Thu, 4th Nov 2021 7:22 pm 

    BLAH! BLAH! BLAH! … and more BLAH! – Greta.

  2. sPECIES 8472 of Muzie did JetBlue Fligh 261 celebrates elite whitey supertard GRETA and supertard MADKAT on Thu, 4th Nov 2021 9:43 pm 

    they don’t MUZZ-19 themselves with reckless abandon

    please feel at ease among friends we’re all lovers of supremacist muzzies here

  3. supertard MUZZ-19 himself with reckless abandon and went to SAINT PETERS on Thu, 4th Nov 2021 9:45 pm 

    TheCovidBlog.com
    January 26, 2021

    please feel at ease among freinds we’re all lovers of supremacist muzzies here

  4. blah blah blah sPECIES 8472 of Muzzie did JetBlue Flight 261 reports elite whitey supertard MUZZ-19 himself with reckless abandon WENT TO SAINT PETERS on Thu, 4th Nov 2021 9:47 pm 

    Original story date: March 6th, 2021

    The COVID World post date: August 14th, 2021

  5. Dredd on Fri, 5th Nov 2021 5:43 am 

    The article indicates that “The promise to end coal comes as coal consumption is making a resurgence globally after years of steady decline. This year, coal consumption worldwide is expected to grow by 5.7 percent as the global economy rebounds from the coronavirus pandemic and is now just below its peak set in 2014, according to new data published Thursday by the Global Carbon Project. China’s government recently ordered coal companies to increase their mining output to manage an electricity shortage that has led to rolling blackouts nationwide.”

    That is The Way of Civilizations – 2 y’all.

  6. Theedrich on Sat, 13th Nov 2021 5:57 pm 

    The U.S. has entered its final, criminal phase. The “indispensable nation” can no longer support itself.  It has become bloated beyond all recognition with Tainteresque complexity, parasitic outhouselanders, bribe-ocrats, White genosuicidists, elite ghouls and general corruption that would make the homicidally maniacal Roman emperors, Nero (Mr. “666”) and Caligula, green with envy.

    The debased, dysgenically descending electorate has chosen to die.  The military, obsessed with ferreting out “White rage,” is interested only in graft and $zillions for semi-functional, expensive toys, while propagandizing the naïve young and uneducated with blather about “patriotism,” God (conceived as a body-building geezer), “saving civilization,” &c., &c.  The other governmental departments are headed by morally and politically decadent or diseased life forms and genetic mutants.

    Both main political parties, especially the “progressive” Democrats — fueled by billions of bribe-cash from Georg Sörös and his Chosenite pal, Klaus Schwab, founder and head of the planeticidal Weltwirtschaftsforum — are fast destroying the demographics of the country with anthropoid and narcotic imports from international crime syndicates based in Latinoland, assisted by Red China and urged on by taxpayer-funded American academics.

    Aside from noting that the price of everything is rising due to unprecedented inflation, the masses have no clue about what is going on.  They swallow the Bolshevik-controlled nightly fake news, hook, line and sinker.  American religious organizations, besides taking money from the regime in order to conceal government perversion, promise the self-deluding White masses that Jesus the Jew will reward them in the cemetery.  Other than that, Whites are labeled as genetically “supremacist” and hence irredeemable, a race whose only option henceforth is extinction.

    We have seen mass suicides in history before, but never in the vastness and to the extent now occurring.  The current phenomen was warned about by astrophysicist Fred Hoyle over a half-century ago in his Of Men and Galaxies, when he lectured ominously about the forthcoming peril of mankind becoming a criminal species.

    The “climate crisis,” “pollution,” “racial inequality,” and other nihilist obsessions are now driving us into the abyss.  As Nietzsche wrote long ago, “Wer mit Ungeheuern kämpft, mag zusehn, daß er nicht dabei zum Ungeheuer wird.  Und wenn du lange in einen Abgrund blickst, blickt der Abgrund auch in dich hinein.”  — Menschliches, Allzumenschliches, Aph. 146

  7. FamousDrScanlon on Sat, 13th Nov 2021 9:10 pm 

    Theedrich here’s an article about a recent white sub-tribe that’s grown like a cancer.

    These clowns are too funny. They know everything. 5 seconds after every failed prediction they’re back to insisting they are smarter than everyone else.

    QAnon Crowd Super Bummed That JFK Jr. Did Not Appear in Dallas POST MORTEM

    The Dallas QAnon believers had become convinced the Kennedys would unveil themselves on Nov. 2 around 12:30 p.m. Central time, right around the timing of Kennedy’s assassination.

    Rather than face their disappointment, though, the QAnon faithful quickly pivoted to a new prediction, claiming that the Kennedys and a host of other late celebrities would unveil themselves at a Rolling Stones concert in Dallas later that day.

    QAnon promoter Michael Brian Protzman, who has more than 100,000 followers with the “Negative48” channel, has used numerology to argue that the Kennedys are descendants of Jesus Christ.

    They began to pick out random people they encountered in the Dallas area as celebrities in disguise, claiming one man was comedian Robin Williams and another comedian Richard Pryor.

    The list of returning celebrities grew long, coming to include not just the Kennedys, Bryant, and Williams, but also actress Debbie Reynolds and racecar driver Dale Earnhardt.

    “Yes, there’s been a rapper here, we’re not sure of his name,” said one man livestreaming from Dallas.

    “Tupac, maybe?” asked one helpful listener.

    https://www.thedailybeast.com/qanon-crowd-super-bummed-that-jfk-jr-did-not-appear-in-dallas

  8. Theedrich on Sun, 14th Nov 2021 3:17 pm 

    The U.S. has entered its final, criminal phase. The “indispensable nation” can no longer support itself.  It has become bloated beyond all recognition with Tainteresque complexity, parasitic outhouselanders, bribe-ocrats, White genosuicidists, elite ghouls and general corruption that would make the homicidally maniacal Roman emperors, Nero (Mr. “666”) and Caligula, green with envy.

    The debased, dysgenically descending electorate has chosen to die.  The military, obsessed with ferreting out “White rage,” is interested only in graft and $zillions for semi-functional, expensive toys, while propagandizing the naïve young and uneducated with blather about “patriotism,” God (conceived as a body-building geezer), “saving civilization,” &c., &c.  The other governmental departments are headed by morally and politically decadent or diseased life forms and genetic mutants.

    Both main political parties, especially the “progressive” Democrats — fueled by billions of bribe-cash from Georg Sörös and his Chosenite pal, Klaus Schwab, founder and head of the planeticidal Weltwirtschaftsforum — are fast destroying the demographics of the country with anthropoid and narcotic imports from international crime syndicates based in Latinoland, assisted by Red China and urged on by taxpayer-funded American academics.

    Aside from noting that the price of everything is rising due to unprecedented inflation, the masses have no clue about what is going on.  They swallow the Bolshevik-controlled nightly fake news, hook, line and sinker.  American religious organizations, besides taking money from the regime in order to conceal government perversion, promise the self-deluding White masses that Jesus the Jew will reward them in the cemetery.  Other than that, Whites are labeled as genetically “supremacist” and hence irredeemable, a race whose only option henceforth is extinction.

    We have seen mass suicides in history before, but never in the vastness and to the extent now occurring.  The current phenomen was warned about by astrophysicist Fred Hoyle over a half-century ago in his Of Men and Galaxies, when he lectured ominously about the forthcoming peril of mankind becoming a criminal species.

    The “climate crisis,” “pollution,” “racial inequality,” and other nihilist obsessions are now driving us into the abyss.  As Nietzsche wrote long ago, “Wer mit Ungeheuern kämpft, mag zusehn, daß er nicht dabei zum Ungeheuer wird.  Und wenn du lange in einen Abgrund blickst, blickt der Abgrund auch in dich hinein.”  — Menschliches, Allzumenschliches, Aph. 146.

  9. makati1 on Sun, 14th Nov 2021 4:18 pm 

    Theedrich, I agree. The US is committing suicide by a thousand cuts. The Federal Reserve is doing its job of destroying the economy on purpose and the government is doing its job of shredding any ‘freedoms’ that still exist. It is all planned. The people who are running the show (not senile Biden and his VP whore) know what they are doing and why. If the serfs don’t pick up their pitchforks and tar this next year, it will be all over for the US and the rest of the 1st world. But then, most of the world will cheer. Rough times ahead. Buckle up!

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