India, China face criticism for last minute change on coal deal at COP26 summittext_fields
India and China will have to "explain" to the world why they chose to alter the deal o completely phase out coal power across the world said CO26 Climate Summit President Alok Sharma on Monday. The climate talk sponsored by the United Nations drew to a close on Saturday with most delegates signing the new deal to "phase down" coal power in the next few decades to cap the rate of rising global temperatures at 1.5 degrees Celsius.
Sharma, a Member of Parliament in the UK, told reporters at a press conference in Downing Street that was deeply frustrated by the deal although it was still salvageable. The summit, which was initially due to end on Friday, had to go into overtime before a deal was agreed late on Saturday -
India and China as well as other developing nations had opposed the initial wording of the deal which was to "phase out" coal power completely, a rather ambitious goal which squarely targeted the use of fossil fuels as a major culprit in global warming. The two countries, which depend on coal to power their needs, argued that the deal was unfairly biased against developing nations who needed coal while ignoring other fossil fuel and natural gas used by developed nations.
Vice Minister Zhao Yingmin, who headed China's team in Glasgow, said he hoped developed countries could "make further efforts to honour their commitments, enhancing support for developing countries, instead of merely urging other parties to raise their ambitions".
UK President Boris Johnson, who appeared with Sharma at the conference, agreed that the deal could have gone a lot further but also said that there was not much difference in the end as the COP26 Summit had sounded the "death knell" for coal power in the years to come.