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Netherlands to stop funding overseas coal projects

World Coal,

The Netherlands will no longer provide funding for new overseas coal projects, after the government released a joint statement with the US regarding climate change and low-carbon investments.

The government released the following public statement:

“The Netherlands and the United States share a common interest in urgent action to address global climate change. We affirm the importance of reaching a global climate change agreement in 2015 that can attract broad and ambitious participation. The agreement should reflect the continuous evolution of capabilities of countries in tackling this global challenge. It should also take account of the important role played by the private sector, sub-national actors, and civil society in finding solutions to addressing carbon pollution while improving the resilience of nations to the impacts of climate change. Our two countries pledge to continue our cooperation towards adopting such an agreement at the United Nations climate conference in Paris in 2015.

“We reaffirm our support of internationally agreed commitments to scale up the mobilisation of climate finance and recognize that different forms of financing are needed to support countries making the transition to a low-emission, climate resilient economy. We strive to deploy public resources to catalyse private climate finance in and to developing countries.

“We emphasise that our work to scale up climate friendly investments in developing countries is most effective when combined with reducing public incentives for high-carbon infrastructure. To this end, the Netherlands is joining the United States, the United Kingdom, and others in agreeing to end support for public financing of new coal-fired power plants abroad except in rare circumstances. This includes our bilateral development finance institutions and projects financed through the multilateral development banks, where it should be noted that the Netherlands is a member of mixed constituencies. Complementing action already taken by the United States, our two countries are working together to promote a technology-neutral standard in the OECD Export Credit Group that limits support for high carbon intensity power plants by export credit agencies.”

Public funding

The pact, announced by President Obama and Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, means that the Netherlands will stop contributing public money to new coal-fired power stations abroad.

“The Netherlands is joining with the United States and a group of other countries in a bid to stop international public funding of new coal-fired power plants, for example by multilateral development banks,” said Rutte, during a joint press conference in Amsterdam.

“We want to achieve an international level playing field, to ensure that private and public parties invest in green growth wherever possible.”

Edited from various sources by Katie Woodward

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