Powering Past Coal Alliance Membership Blows Out Past 50

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The Powering Past Coal Alliance, launched only last month by the UK and Canada at COP23, has seen its membership blow out past 50 countries, regions, and businesses, according to news revealed at the One Planet Summit held in France on Tuesday.

Among a raft of announcements from the One Planet Summit held in France on Tuesday, the UK and Canada announced that membership to their Powering Past Coal Alliance — which was only launched last month at COP23 in Bonn, Germany — has now blown past 50 countries, regions, and businesses, including the State of California, Sweden, New Zealand, Italy, and France, as well as high-profile corporations such as Unilever, Virgin Group, and EDF.

The Powering Past Coal Alliance wants to accelerate the transition away from coal and toward “low-carbon, climate-resilient economies” and is bringing together “a diverse range of governments, businesses and organisations that are united in taking action to accelerate clean growth and climate protection through the rapid phase-out of traditional coal power.” Commitment to the Alliance seeks “to achieve that phase-out in a sustainable and economically inclusive way, including appropriate support for workers and communities” and, more specifically:

  • Government partners commit to phasing out existing traditional coal power in their jurisdictions, and to a moratorium on any new traditional coal power stations without operational carbon capture and storage within their jurisdictions.
  • Business and other non-government partners can commit to powering their operations without coal.
  • All partners commit to supporting clean power through their policies (whether public or corporate, as appropriate) and investments, and to restricting financing for traditional coal power without carbon capture and storage.

Originally launched by the UK and Canada and joined by 23 other countries, states, and organizations as of November 16, the Alliance has since expanded to include a total of 34 countries and states — including new additions Sweden and Ethiopia, the US states of California, Oregon, and Washington, and businesses such as EDF, Engie, Iberdrola, Ørsted, Unilever, and the Virgin Group. The full list can be read here (PDF).

“I’m thrilled to see so many business leaders commit today to moving away from a source of power that is choking cities and causing close to a million premature deaths per year,” said Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change, Canada. “The market has moved on, and coal is not coming back. Phasing out coal power is the right choice for the planet and our kids.”

“Coal power has no future if we are to meet the Paris goals,” added Isabella Lövin, Minister for International Development Cooperation and Climate and Deputy Prime Minister, Sweden. “In Sweden, we have basically already gone through the phase out, and we are aiming for 100 percent renewable energy.”

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Joshua S Hill

I'm a Christian, a nerd, a geek, and I believe that we're pretty quickly directing planet-Earth into hell in a handbasket! I also write for Fantasy Book Review (.co.uk), and can be found writing articles for a variety of other sites. Check me out at about.me for more.

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