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G7 Nations Diverge On Plan To Phase Out Coal Power By 2030

The G7 group of the world’s most industrialized nations is struggling to find common ground on committing to phasing out coal power generation by 2030 ahead of a summit in Japan later this week, according to a draft communique for the meeting seen by Bloomberg News.

In those draft documents, the United States, Japan, and the European Union have said they have reservations about a proposal by the UK to set a firm 2030 deadline to end unabated coal-fired power generation when the G7 energy and climate change ministers meet at a summit on April 15 and 16. 

Germany has reportedly offered alternative wording to the firm timeline proposed by the UK, with drafts being circulated mentioning coal phase-out “ideally by 2030” or “in the 2030s,” according to Bloomberg. 

The summit host Japan, a resource-poor developed economy dependent on fossil fuel imports for its energy demand, has suggested that the G7 reiterate a commitment from last year to achieve “a fully or predominantly decarbonized power sector by 2035.”

Last year, the G7 Climate, Energy and Environment Ministers said after a meeting in May that “we further commit to a goal of achieving predominantly decarbonised electricity sectors by 2035, prioritising, consistent with our 2030 NDCs, our power sector transition commitments and our respective net zero commitments, concrete and timely steps towards the goal of an eventual phase-out of domestic unabated coal power generation.”

A month later, the G7 Heads of State and Government said in June they “commit to achieving a fully or predominantly decarbonized power sector by 2035.”

“Recognizing that coal power generation is the single biggest cause of global temperature increase, we commit to prioritizing concrete and timely steps towards the goal of accelerating phase-out of domestic unabated coal power generation,” the G7 leaders said last year without giving a timeline for the phase-out.

Ahead of the summit in Japan this week, the G7 nations are also reportedly considering endorsing new upstream investment in natural gas despite climate concerns.

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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