U.S. climate envoy John Kerry was confident the U.S. would eliminate coal use in just nine years, he said in an interview at the COP26 climate conference in Glasgow Tuesday, Nov. 9.
“By 2030 in the United States, we won’t have coal,” he said, according to Bloomberg. “We will not have coal plants.”
Coal use in the U.S. has indisputably been declining over the past decades. According to CBS News, it now made up only 20% of the total U.S. energy source last year from more than 40% in 2011.
But as Kerry suggested, thanks to President Joe Biden’s aim to eradicate carbon emissions from the U.S. power grid by 2035, efforts will be pushed to make environment-friendly rivals more cost-effective and accessible.
“We’re saying we are going to be carbon free in the power sector by 2035,” Kerry said. “I think that’s leadership. I think that’s indicative of what we can do.”
The COP26 climate negotiation featured the United States among 19 other nations pledging to stop financing international coal-fired plants by the end of this year.
Still, Bloomberg noted that some of the biggest power companies are still reluctant to exclude their emissions from fossil fuels by 2050.
According to a report by Ember, an independent energy think tank, the U.S. ranks fourth among G20 countries in terms of per capita coal emissions, which produces 3.08 tonnes of CO2 annually. Coal power emits about three times as much CO2 in the United States as it does globally. The U.S. climate envoy promises no coal by 2030.