TOKYO: Climate Action Network, the global network of over 1,900 civil society organizations fighting the climate crisis, issued a response to Sunday’s G7 Ministers’ Meeting on Climate, Energy and Environment in Sapporo.
Harjeet Singh, Head of Global Political Strategy, Climate Action Network International, commented: “While G7 ministers recognized the need to scale up renewable energy, their commitment to phase-out of fossil fuels is frivolous and full of loopholes. The calls from scientists and activists to urgently phase out fossil fuels and support a just and green transition in developing countries seemed to have fallen on deaf ears. The rich industrialized countries are also shirking on their responsibility to provide adequate finance to help poorer nations adapt to and recover from the losses and damages caused by climate disasters.”
Singh did have some praise for the conference: “The richest and historically most carbon-polluting countries in the world, the G7, for the first time ever committed to quantitative targets for key renewables by 2030 underlining the need for early action in the global climate crisis. This is welcome. The objective to grow clean offshore wind power about six times annually in the next years and solar power almost three times annually compared to 2022, is a breakthrough and in line with recent economic findings by the IPCC on the most cost-effective carbon pollution reduction.”
Stephan Singer, Climate Action Network International’s Senior Adviser on Energy, had some reservations, pointing out, “There is no measurable agreement by the G7 on other sustainable renewable energy resource use, like onshore wind, geothermal. And no target on economy-wide energy efficiency which is critical to remain on track for meeting the 1.5 C survival target in next decade.”
Alex Rafalowicz, Executive Director of the Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty Initiative, also said the meeting failed to address certain issues: “Investments in the gas or any other fossil fuel sector cross the redline of the Paris climate goals. New gas investments are a huge risk to our climate, to local communities, to energy price hikes, and ultimately to the global economy as potential stranded assets. Rather than endorsing new gas investments, G7 ministers should be negotiating the constraint of fossil fuel supplies and an equitable phase-out as the only real way out of the climate crisis.”
Glen Klatovsky, CEO of Climate Action Network Australia, said further work and greater ambition is needed. “While the communique from the G7 demonstrates a step forward, it is still some distance from what is required as demonstrated in the recent IPCC Synthesis Report. It is time to align the ambitions and actions of the wealthiest nations with the clear imperatives described by the science. We need a rapid, fair transition where those nations most impacted by climate change, most of whom are small emitters, are supported by those nations who have benefited most from industrialization.”