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India and China Face Flak for Weakening the Coal Terms of COP26 Resolution

India refused to agree to "phase out" of coal-fired power, and instead replaced the phrase with "phase down".

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Climate Change
2 min read
India and China Face Flak for Weakening the Coal Terms of COP26 Resolution
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A disappointed Alok Sharma, the president of COP26, said on Sunday, 14 November, that India and China will have to provide clarifications on why they decided to water down the language of the conference's final resolution, Reuters reported.

India, supported by China and other coal-dependent developing countries, rejected that clause of the resolution that asked countries to "phase out" of coal-fired power, and instead ensured that the phrase was replaced with "phase down".

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"In terms of China and India, they will on this particular issue have to explain themselves," Sharma told a news conference in London.

India is heavily dependent on coal not just for electricity supply, but also for millions of livelihoods. More about that can be found here.

Environment Minister Bhupender Yadav has defended the phrasing, even saying that the conference was a success for India, The Tribune reported.

"Fossil fuels and their use have enabled parts of the world to attain high levels of growth. Even now, developed countries have not completely phased out coal. The UNFCCC refers to mitigation of GHG emissions from all sources. UNFCCC is not directed at any particular source. Developing countries have a right to their fair share of the global carbon budget and are entitled to the responsible use of fossil fuels within this scope," Yadav's statement read.

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However, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson expressed confusion, saying that "whether the language was 'phase down' or 'phase out' doesn't seem to me as a speaker of English to make that much difference."

"The direction of travel is pretty much the same", he added.

Johnson's disappointment was also quite clear when he said that the nature of diplomacy is such that "we can lobby, we can cajole, we can encourage, but we cannot force sovereign nations to do what they do not wish to do."

The climate conference in Glasgow, Scotland, that last for two weeks ended on Saturday, 13 November.

For the first time in the history of the fight against climate change, tackling the problem of fossil fuel-induced global warming was introduced in a resolution.

(With inputs from Reuters and the Tribune)

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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Topics:  china   India   Coal 

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Edited By :Saundarya Talwar
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