London becomes biggest city to sign fossil fuel non-proliferation treaty

(The Energy Mix, 29 Jun 2022) London has become the biggest city so far to endorse the Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty—a signal that experts say must be matched by action in the United Kingdom capital, where the London Stock Exchange (LSE) holds gigatonnes of embedded carbon emissions in listed companies.

“When it comes to tackling air pollution and the climate emergency, cities like London have a responsibility to act,” Mayor Sadiq Khan said in a June 28 announcement. “We have to be the doers and not the delayers. We must safeguard our future.”

Khan called on cities around the world to “follow London’s lead” and commit to phasing out the use of fossil fuels as the treaty mandates. “The cost of inaction to our economies, livelihoods, environment, and the health of Londoners is far greater than the cost of transitioning to net-zero,” he said. “We simply don’t have time to waste.”

Carbon Tracker responded that more needs to be done by the city where the LSE holds 47 gigatonnes of carbon dioxide emissions embedded in listed companies, That’s “30 times more than those of the UK’s own fossil fuel reserves, and 10 times more than the UK’s 15-year carbon budget,” the London-based think tank said. “We can’t claim London is on a pathway to net-zero whilst we continue to be one of the leading fossil fuel financial centres of the world,” wrote Carbon Tracker founder Mark Campanale.

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The Energy Mix, 29 Jun 2022: London becomes biggest city to sign fossil fuel non-proliferation treaty