G7 Efforts to Keep Climate Agenda on Track as Ukraine War Sparks Energy Supply

BERLIN: Ministers from the world’s richest democracies will argue over how to keep climate change goals on track during their meeting in Berlin on Thursday for talks overshadowed by rising energy costs and fuel concerns over the war in Ukraine.
Energy, Climate and Environment Ministers of the Group of Seven (G7) countries want to reaffirm their commitment to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius and protect biodiversity at their meeting on 25-27 May .
The group will also consider phasing out coal power generation by 2030, according to a draft communiqué seen by Reuters, although sources suggested opposition from the United States and Japan could derail such a pledge.
The draft, which could change significantly by the time talks wrap up on Friday, would also commit G7 countries to have a “net electricity sector” by 2035 and publicly report next year on how they handled a previous G7. deliver on a commitment to end “inefficient” fossil fuel subsidies by 2025.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has sparked a struggle between some countries to buy more non-Russian fossil fuels and burn coal to reduce their reliance on Russian supplies, raising fears that the energy crisis caused by the war is slowing down efforts. to combat climate change.
Campaigners urged G7 ministers to make firm commitments that the fallout from the war in Ukraine would not derail their goals.
“We now have a new reality. The G7 needs to respond to that, and they need to respond with renewables, not fossil fuel infrastructure,” said David Ryfisch, climate policy expert at nonprofit Germanwatch.
As it pushes for consensus on an oil embargo on Russia, the European Union is pushing to accelerate the bloc’s pivot to renewable energy while also finding fossil fuels for Russia’s supplies.
Alden Meyer, senior associate at climate think tank E3G, said tackling climate change is the best and fastest way for countries to achieve energy security.
“Climate effects are worse than scientists originally predicted, and much worse is ahead if we don’t cut emissions soon,” Meyer said. “Delivering on climate promises really becomes even more important in this tense geopolitical environment.”
Ahead of the meeting, the B7 group of leading business and industrial federations of the G7 states called on the group to support a plan along the lines of German Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s “climate club” to raise standards for emissions and harmonize CO2 prices.
Scholz had floated the idea of ​​trying to avoid trade frictions in areas such as green tariffs, developing markets for low-carbon products, carbon pricing and disposal methods.

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