OECD deal nails global coal plant pipeline | WWF

OECD deal nails global coal plant pipeline

Posted on 18 November 2015    
WWF points out that the over-exploitation of fossil fuels - such as coal, gas and oil - is putting the whole of humanity under threat from climate change.
© WWF / Mauri RAUTKARI
(Brussels, Belgium, 18 November 2015) The decision by the Organisation of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries to limit public export finance for coal-fired power plants is insufficient to align with the 2 degrees Celsius global warming threshold, even though it will make a large part of coal plants in the global pipeline ineligible for public support from OECD export credit agencies.
 
OECD members – representing some of the world's richest countries - agreed to end export credits for inefficient coal plant technology. It will take effect from 1 January, 2017, with a review in 2019. The decision was made at a meeting which ended late last night. Between 2007 and 2014 OECD export credit finance for coal represented $34 billion– equivalent to $4.3 billion dollars per year[1], almost half of total international public finance for coal.

Samantha Smith, leader of WWF’s Global Climate and Energy Initiative said: “We hoped for a stronger signal going into the crucial Paris climate talks, starting in just two weeks. But this is a step in the right direction, and it is another nail in the coffin of the coal industry. The agreement will rule out funding to hundreds of coal plant projects globally.”
 
The restrictions of the deal fall short of what is needed because it does not impose a complete ban on support for coal-fired power plants and does not address coal mining and coal infrastructure. It contains a carve-out for support to the most-efficient power plants, and exemptions for supporting less-efficient power plants in the poorest countries.
 
Sebastien Godinot, economist at WWF’s European Policy Office said: “Internal differences meant the European Union could not take a leadership role in these negotiations. We notably deplore the conservative role played by Germany, Czech Republic, Slovakia and Poland. The case of Germany, claiming to be a climate champion, clearly shows how business interests have taken the upper hand from climate considerations. It is regrettable that the position of France, the only one aligned with the 2°C target, was not followed by more countries.”
 
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For further information, contact:
 
Mandy Jean Woods mwoods@wwf.org.za / @MandyJeanWoods  / +27 72 393 0027
Sam Smith ssmith@wwf.no  / @pandaclimate / +47 450 22 149
Sebastien Godinot sgodinot@wwf.eu / +32 489 461 314
 
About WWF - WWF's mission is to stop the degradation of the earth's natural environment and to build a future in which humans live in harmony with nature. The Global Climate & Energy Initiative (GCEI) is WWF’s global programme addressing climate change, promoting renewable and sustainable energy, scaling up green finance, engaging the private sector and working nationally and internationally on implementing low carbon, climate resilient development.
 
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WWF points out that the over-exploitation of fossil fuels - such as coal, gas and oil - is putting the whole of humanity under threat from climate change.
© WWF / Mauri RAUTKARI Enlarge

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