"More and more member states are making the political commitment to phase out coal in the next decade". Among European countries introducing or confirming such timelines, France intends to phase out Coal by 2022 -- before Italy and Ireland by 2025.
Denmark, Spain, the Netherlands, Portugal and Finland aim to do so by 2030, the Spanish commissioner told a press conference in Brussels.Standing by Canete, commission vise president Macros Safcovic alled the pledges "quite a significant signal coming from quite an important number of member states." The commission added that Germany, the EU's most powerful economy and biggest polluter, has also indicated it will set "an end date" for coal - based electricity.
An EU official told AFP the remaining 20 countries, including coal-dependent Poland, had not submitted timelines for weaning themselves off fossil fuel.
The official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the commission was also waiting for the initial eight countries to detail how they will achieve the goal.Not only must they show how they will finance the shift but what green energy source they will use to replace coal, according to the official Under the 2015 Paris treaty, the EU pledged to reduce its carbon emissions by 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030.
During its review, the commission said the bloc is on track to meet that goal but was falling short on its target for renewable energy use and energy savings.
Referring to coal plants, it is "pretty clear" that fossil fuels have no place in a carbon-neutral economy the commission hopes EU countries endorse for 2050.
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The European Commission, the EU's executive arm, received the pledges as contributions to the bloc's efforts to deliver on the 2015 Paris climate agreement.