The UN special envoy for Climate Action and the founder of the philanthropic organization Bloomberg Philanthropies, Michael R. Bloomberg, and the Commissioner for Energy and Climate Action of the European Union, Miguel Arias Cañete, pledged to join efforts to manage the European coal transition, at the Global Climate Action Summit celebration in San Francisco.
Bloomberg and Arias Cañete have announced a new partnership to increase Europe’s clean energy ambitions. Bloomberg Philanthropies and the European Commission will jointly convene leaders in the financial and business sectors to further develop viable strategies for a low carbon transition. They will join efforts towards a common goal: to highlight the economic opportunities of the transition to clean energy in creating growth and sustainable jobs.
European transition for 41 regions of 12 countries
The alliance will be based on the framework of the European Commission Platform for the Coal Regions in Transition. Launched in December 2017, the platform provides support for the economic and technological transformation of 41 coal-dependent regions in 12 EU countries, facilitating the development of long-term projects and strategies with the purpose of promoting the transition process and responding to environmental needs and social challenges. In the context of this Platform, Bloomberg Philanthropies will develop a research analysis of energy from coal, plant by plant, which will improve the knowledge base of the platform and allow more specific actions for the European transition.
In the words of Bloomberg, “coal is a double threat, because it feeds climate change and poisons air and water, and the more accurate information we have about these harmful effects, the greater the incentives to switch to cleaner and cheaper energy. ”
Michael R. Bloomberg: “In the US more than half of the coal power plants have closed or planned their closures since 2011”
“That’s what we’ve seen in the US where more than half of the coal power plants have closed or have planned their closures since 2011. The European Commission has shown great leadership in this matter and we will be happy to jointly work to accelerate that progress “, the founder of the philanthropic organization said.
Throughout the world, countries acknowledge that energy from coal is not only harmful to our environment and public health: it is no longer economically viable. As evidence increases in support of a clean and fast energy transition, Bloomberg Philanthropies and the European Commission are encouraging new efforts and innovations to support a European transition away from the continued use of coal in the EU, while new jobs are created and Communities are strengthened.
Miguel Arias Cañete: “Our goal is that no region, no citizen is left behind”
In this sense, Arias Cañete has pointed out “the role of coal in our energy system is declining”. That is why, the European Commissioner said, “we launched the Platform for the Coal Regions in Transition, to help the regions impacted manage the social and economic transformation that comes with the reduction of coal. We are pleased that Bloomberg Philanthropies joins the Platform with its experience and capacity, to the benefit of the European regions that are managing this transition. Our goal is that no region, no citizen is left behind. ”
Bloomberg Philanthropies leads several climate-related projects, including the Beyond Coal initiative, which has seen the phasing out of 50% of US coal plants since the campaign launch. More recently, Bloomberg Philanthropies formed a partnership with the Powering Past Coal Alliance, a coalition led by Canada and the United Kingdom to develop studies of economies in transition. Bloomberg Philanthropies has committed a total of $ 264 million to support efforts to accelerate the transition to clean energy in the US, Europe and other geographical areas.
Over the past 12 months, the Platform for the Coal Regions in Transition has brought together stakeholders from all regions of the EU, including regional authorities, national administrations, industry, NGOs and trade unions. Within the framework of the Platform, the Commission is actively involved in coal producing regions to stimulate strategies and projects that can help drive the European transition towards new economic models that are competitive and sustainable.