G7 commitment sets the stage for a clean European power system by 2035

(EurActiv, 1 Jul 2022) The latest G7 commitment – to clean up power systems by 2035 – shows that this is a credible and achievable milestone, and signals a clear direction of travel, writes Chris Rosslowe.

Dr Chris Rosslowe is a senior energy & climate data analyst at Ember, a think-tank advocating for a shift from coal to clean electricity.

G7 leaders this week committed to “achieving a fully or predominantly decarbonised power sector by 2035” – a milestone already championed by the UK and Germany. This is a subtle but important update on their previous pledge to do so “in the 2030s.”

It represents a strengthened consensus among economic heavyweights that decarbonising electricity by 2035 is critical for the Paris agreement.

While much will be written about the G7 opening the door to public support for fossil fuels in “exceptional circumstances” – which is clearly a concern – the recommitment to decarbonise electricity shows that longer-term goals are being strengthened, not sacrificed.

There are signs that clean power is catching on in Europe too. The REPowerEU plan – the energy response to Russia’s aggression against Ukraine – stops short of targeting fully clean power by 2035, but would go a long way to putting the EU on track. It is also a long way from becoming official EU policy.

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EurActiv, 1 Jul 2022: G7 commitment sets the stage for a clean European power system by 2035