Stop Building Coal Plants Now: UN Chief   Visit Site

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Irina Slav

Irina is a writer for with over a decade of experience writing on the oil and gas industry.

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The world should stop building new coal plants and phase out those already in existence, the secretary-general of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres, said at the World Economic Forum in Davos.

In a special address at the forum, Guterres said that “The first priority must be a targeted phase-out of coal. No new coal plants should be built.”

The focus of Guterres’ speech, however, was on the just transition—an issue that has been garnering increasing attention as it becomes clear that not all economies have the resources to move at the same pace towards a more renewable energy future.

 “The last two years have demonstrated a simple but brutal truth — if we leave anyone behind, we leave everyone behind,” Guterres said, going on to say that “if we fail to match climate rhetoric with climate actions, we condemn ourselves to a hotter, more volatile earth, with worsening disasters and mass displacement.”

This is not the first time the chief of the United Nations has called for the end of coal. Last year, at an address to the Powering Past Coal Alliance, Guterres said, “Once upon a time, coal brought cheap electricity to entire regions and vital jobs to communities. Those days are gone. Phasing out coal from the electricity sector is the single most important step to get in line with the 1.5 degree goal.” 

By Irina Slav for

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