January 25, 2022 5:59 pm

Glasgow vows to accelerate the end of fossil fuels

  • A score of countries launch a joint declaration in which they promise to stop financing the purchase of fossil fuels by 2022

  • More than 40 countries commit to eliminate the use of coal; the main responsible for the global increase in temperatures

On the halfway point of the first week of the Glasgow Climate Summit (COP26), Glasgow promises accelerate the end of fossil fuels. This Thursday, the day dedicated to the negotiations on energy transition, governments around the world have launched several manifestos, commitments and pacts on the end of coal, oil and gas and the promotion of renewable energies.

These are the agreements announced to date.

2022, end of investments in fossil fuels

This Thursday, a score of countries have signed a joint declaration in which they promise stop financing the purchase of fossil fuels by 2022 and instead invest public funds in renewable energy. As argued by the promoters of this initiative, this agreement is the first global pact that sets an end date for the purchase of coal, oil and gas; the three fossil fuels that have triggered the climate crisis and that threaten to expose the planet to unprecedented global warming.

The initiative, promoted by the United Kingdom, has the US backing, one of the world’s largest consumers of fossil fuels. At the moment, the pact takes off with the signing of a score of governments around the world but it is expected that, once its launch is announced, other states will adhere to the commitment. The promoters of this initiative calculate that this pact could divert up to $ 7.8 billion a year from fossil fuels to clean energy.

“Closing fossil fuels is critical to addressing the climate crisis. This announcement is a step in the right direction, but must be expanded with more governments and public financial institutions, “says Tasneem Essop, CEO of Climate Action Network International.” This is an important announcement, but I am surprised that countries like Germany, France and Italy don’t be on board this initiative to implement something you promised last year. The fact that some countries consider classifying gas as a “green” investment shows that they are not in touch with reality “, comments Bas Eickhout, Member of the European Parliament, after the announcement of this pact.

Pact for the transition from coal to clean energy

More than 40 countries commit to eliminate the use of coal; the fossil fuel that contributes the most to the global increase in temperatures. The agreement, announced this Thursday by the organization of COP26, promises to end coal use by 2030 for major economies and in 2040 for developing countries. Some of the world’s main coal consumers (such as Poland, Vietnam and Chile) have joined this pact. Others (such as Australia, India, China and the United States) have not added their signature. Environmental experts and entities applaud the initiative but, in turn, are concerned about the lack of such consensus.

This Thursday, in addition, governments around the world have launched a new joint declaration about the end of coal and the commitment to renewable energies. The manifesto is published this Thursday with the signature of Germany, Canada, Chile, Spain, Italy and Vietnam, among others. The declaration launches four commitments: one rapid commitment to the deployment of renewable energies, an accelerated transition away from coal, the end of the construction of new coal plants and a just ecological transition.

Many of these promises are not much of a novelty, as they were also announced in other global commitments. In this case, moreover, it is also unclear how and when these global pacts will be transferred to global legislation. That is, how you will go from theory to practice.

More firms to turn off the oil and gas tap

The international coalition ‘Beyond Oil and Gas’ adds the support of more countries and states. As announced on Thursday by the Danish and Costa Rican delegations, several governments have adhered to the pact to end oil and gas exploitation. The final list of signatories of this agreement is still confidential and, in principle, not all affiliates will be made known until Wednesday, November 10 (when the Summit negotiations are coming to an end).

The alliance proposes two lines of work. On the one hand, “first level” signatories commit to immediately stop the issuance of permits of oil and gas exploitation. On the other hand, secondary signers can join the pledge under the promise that they will phase out the use of these fossil fuels and their funding. It is not yet clear how many countries will join one line of work or the other.

Related news

It is expected that during this Thursday, day dedicated to energy transition negotiations, more commitments are announced on the sector. The end of fossil fuels, or at least their drastic reduction, is once again in the spotlight of the negotiations.


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