COP26 Caves on Coal – “Phase Down” Rather than “Phase Out”

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

According to CNBC India has just saved the world, by forcing everyone to accept the deletion of the centrepiece of COP26, replacing the “Phase Out” of coal with the much weaker phrase “Phase Down”.

Countries strike deal at COP26 climate summit after last-minute compromise on coal

PUBLISHED SAT, NOV 13 20212:53 PM ESTUPDATED 31 MIN AGO
Sam Meredith @SMEREDITH19

  • The announcement comes several hours after the scheduled Friday evening deadline.
  • Delegates had struggled to resolve major sticking points, such as phasing out coal, fossil fuel subsidies and financial support to low-income countries.
  • The U.N. meeting in Glasgow, Scotland, was billed as humanity’s last and best chance to keep the all-important goal of 1.5 degrees Celsius alive.

Negotiators from nearly 200 countries at the COP26 summit on Saturday reached an agreement to try to prevent progressively worse and potentially irreversible climate impacts.

The announcement comes several hours after the scheduled Friday evening deadline.

Delegates had struggled to resolve major sticking points, such as phasing out coal, fossil fuel subsidies and financial support to low-income countries.

India, among the world’s biggest burners of coal, raised a last-minute change of fossil fuel language in the pact, going from a “phase out” of coal to a “phase down.” After initial objections, opposing countries ultimately conceded.

In an emotional address to assembled delegates, the U.K.’s COP26 President Alok Sharma said he was “deeply sorry” for the way the process had unfolded. “I understand the deep disappointment. It’s also vital we protect this package,” Sharma said.

The U.N. meeting in Glasgow, Scotland, was billed as humanity’s last and best chance to keep the all-important goal of 1.5 degrees Celsius alive. This temperature threshold refers to the aspirational target inscribed in the landmark 2015 Paris Agreement.

Read more: https://www.cnbc.com/2021/11/13/cop26-countries-strike-climate-deal-at-un-summit-to-limit-heating.html

What can I say – please accept a big thank you from WUWT, Prime Minister Modi.

I have Indian friends who speak of Prime Minister Modi with reverence. As an economic rationalist, Prime Minister Modi rose to power after a spectacularly successful term as chief minister of the Indian state of Gujarat. Wikipedia seem to hate Modi, in my opinion with a similar level of venom as they display towards President Trump, which gives you a pretty good idea what kind of politician Modi is. Modi’s party, the BJP, are right wing India first nationalists.

The phrase “Phase out coal” could have sent an instant chill through the energy market, raising the perception of risk for those people still willing to invest in coal.

“Phase down” will be interpreted by many as a signal that it is business as usual, that the COP26 climate agreement is just another empty international greenwashing exercise.

Update (EW): Video of COP26 President Alok Sharma with tears in his eyes, after India ambushes and wrecks the end of coal centrepiece near the end of the conference.

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