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Article

11 Dec 2020

Author:
Fiona Harvey, The Guardian

UK to stop funding overseas fossil fuel projects

The UK taxpayer is to stop funding fossil fuel projects overseas as part of the government’s push for international action on the climate ahead of a key summit on Saturday.

Taxpayers helped to support more than £21bn of fossil fuel development overseas in the last four years, despite calls from green campaigners to halt the finance...

The halt to funding for fossil fuels has been mooted since early this year, when the prime minister was stung by accusations of hypocrisy because the UK continued to fund such developments despite preparing to host the next round of vital UN climate talks, Cop26, in Glasgow.

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The Cop26 conference has been postponed until next November because of coronavirus, but on Saturday Johnson will co-host – alongside the UN secretary general, António Guterres, and the French president, Emmanuel Macron – an interim summit of world leaders at which all countries are expected to come forward with strengthened targets to cut emissions by 2030.

The UK has already set a fresh target of cutting emissions by 68% by 2030, and on Friday morning EU member states announced that they had agreed to strengthen their target for cutting greenhouse gas emissions in the next decade, in line with their long-term goal of net-zero carbon by 2050.

The EU has committed to cut carbon by 55% by 2030 compared with 1990 levels, after member states wrangled into early Friday morning as Poland held out for concessions...

Campaigners said the EU could have gone further...

Current commitments under the Paris agreement are insufficient to meet its goal of keeping global temperature rises well below 2C more than pre-industrial levels...

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UK to stop funding overseas fossil fuel projects as EU member states agree on tougher climate goals ahead of interim climate summit

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COP26: UN Climate Summit 2021 - One week in, financing commitments soar, but legitimacy is questioned as civil society is largely excluded