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The European Union wants to abandon coal by 2050, but this will require significant help from European banks, which still finance 26 per cent of all coal power plants in the world.
The discovery in the last few years of large gas reserves in the region has whetted appetites in Ankara, which has been forcefully demanding its piece of the pie, even at the risk of contesting the limits of respective economic zones as well as provoking the EU’s intervention and threatening the region’s stability.
As the EU wants to get ambitious on climate change, it will have to act fast and decisevely on coal – which is the source of 28 per cent of CO2 emissions. About 600 coal-fired power plants are still in operation in the EU, especially in Germany and Poland.
Since some of the world’s largest gas reserves were discovered in Cyprus, the island has been coveted by fossil-fuel giants. The situation is burdening delicate negotiations on reunification.
“People across Europe overwhelmingly want the health, environmental, and employment benefits that come with switching from dirty coal, oil and gas to a universally accessible, affordable and renewably powered energy system and energy efficiency”.