Energy and environment ministers at the Group of 20 meeting of industrialized nations that took place in Naples, Italy, late last week failed to come to a consensus on several key commitments to tackle climate change in their final communique.
There were two points in particular that were not agreed upon: one was around phasing out coal-fired power generation and the other was around whether to move more quickly to decarbonize than was agreed to under the Paris Agreement. Most countries were in agreement on the first point, but several countries, including China, India and Russia objected to the language.
The final communique did include an agreement that countries would boost their climate targets, known as “nationally determined contributions,” ahead of the upcoming COP26 meeting, which will take place this November in Glasgow, and the issue of coal is expected to be discussed again at another G20 summit in October.
However, the failure to come to an agreement on concrete targets has experts worried about the ability of countries to make progress at COP26. “It’s a decent outcome in terms of what the expectations were. Of course, in terms of the state of the planet and the climate emergency that we’re in — the impacts that are mounting every day — it’s not adequate,” said Alden Meyer, a senior associate at E3G.
Sources: Reuters, Financial Times, Axios, The Guardian. Commentary: Justin Worland, TIME
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Featured image: G20 map (public domain)