The leaders of the G7 Summit 2021 in Cornwall ended the three-day meeting this weekend, failing to make decisions on firmer climate change actions. The group did not agree on a timeline to eliminate coal from the energy mix which disappointed activists and climate change supporters.
Leaders agreed to commit $100 billion a year by 2025 to finance poorer countries to move away from coal and scale up cleaner energy alternatives. They made the same pledge in 2009 to be contributing that amount until 2020 but the target was not met entirely because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“We had hoped that the leaders of the world’s richest nations would come away from this week having put their money where their mouth is,” said Catherine Pettengell, director at Climate Action Network.
Many activists were not completely satisfied with the results from the G7 Summit as they were expecting bolder actions. Not agreeing on a deadline for coal use was considered a deep disappointment ahead of the global climate conference later this year.
G7 Summit Commitments
The G7 leaders from the USA, France, Germany, Canada, Italy, Japan and the UK said they will make big corporations pay their share of taxes to tackle climate change. They claimed they will not finance coal burning unless it includes carbon capture technologies. The countries’ climate change pledges were also reiterated.
“We commit to … halving our collective emissions over the two decades to 2030, increasing and improving climate finance to 2025 and to conserve or protect at least 30 percent of our land and oceans by 2030,” according to the joint communique.
Environmentalists still warn that with a lack of stronger commitments on a deadline for coal would also encourage China’s to continue burning the fuel. More adequate support for the climate change issue and the pandemic is needed for developing nations to agree to adopt more ambitious actions on climate at the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow later this year.
The G7 Summit on climate action and the Covid-19 pandemic managed to unite nations around the commitment to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050. However, bolder actions are still required by environmental groups and communities in terms of progress on climate change mitigation and green financing.