Sri Lanka pledges to become carbon neutral halting new coal power plants

Sri Lanka is now taking every possible preliminary action to become a carbon neutral country with a green economy and obtain 70 percent of energy requirements through renewable sources by 2030.

The island nation has openly shown its commitment towards this end by signing an accord (pledge) with six other countries to stop building new coal power plants.

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa said the government has made plans to transition away from fossil fuels, promote de- carbonization.

, He said the target of Sri Lanka is to obtain 70% of the country’s energy requirements through renewable sources by 2030.

The President expressed these views while speaking at the UN High-Level Dialogue on Energy in New York this week.

Sri Lanka is encouraging entrepreneurs, small businesses, and community organisations to invest in 7,000 small scale solar projects throughout the country and the President said the country’s largest wind power farm was also recently inaugurated.

 President Rajapaksa also said Sri Lanka further welcomes large scale investments in renewable energy, particularly in solar, wind and biomass, over the coming decades.

This pledge ‘The No New Coal Compact” initiated by the United Nations includes the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka; Republic of Chile; Kingdom of Denmark; French Republic Federal Republic of Germany; United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland; and Montenegro.

The countries that are committed to a No New Coal Compact will immediately cease the issuance of new permits for unabated coal-fired power generation projects and cease new construction of unabated coal-fired power generation projects as of the end of 2021.

New multi-billion-dollar commitments to increase renewables and access to electricity and clean cooking technologies were announced on Friday (24) at a critical UN energy summit.

This was aimed at boosting efforts to reduce the ranks of nearly 800 million people living without electricity and the 2.6 billion people living without access to clean cooking while setting the world on a trajectory towards net-zero-emissions by 2050.

More than US$400 billion in new finance and investment was committed by governments and the private sector during the UN High-level Dialogue on Energy, the first leader-level meeting on energy under the auspices of the UN General Assembly in 40 years.

Over 35 countries — ranging from Small Island Developing States to major emerging and industrialized economies — made significant new energy commitments in the form of Energy Compacts.

The new commitments would result in large increases in the installed capacity of renewable energy and significant improvements in energy efficiency around the world — leading to hundreds of new renewable energy facilities and the creation of millions of new green jobs.

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