The group of seven (G7) industrialised nations today agreed to phase out the use of fossil fuels by the end of the century.
At the conclusion of this year’s two-day G7 summit in Germany, the countries agreed to the “decarbonisation of the global economy over the course of this century”.
The G7 also backed the recommendation from the United Nations’ climate change panel that greenhouse gas emissions should be cut at the upper range of its target of between 40 and 70 percent, compared to 2010 levels, by 2050.
While these commitments by the G7 have been greeted warmly by environmental groups, the G7 nations stopped short of agreeing formal, binding targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Above: Angela Merkel at 2015 G7 summit in Germany. Taken by Flickr user blu-news.org.
The final communique from this year’s G7 meeting did not specify how exactly the group will achieve these cuts.
It did, though, reaffirm support that the climate change conference (COP21), which will be held in December in Paris, should come up with “binding rules … to track progress towards achieving targets, which should promote increased ambition over time” and limit a rise in the “global average temperature [to] below two degrees Celcius”.
The group also stated that it will raise a US$100 billion ($129 billion) per year by 2020 from both public and private sources to help fund programmes to fight climate change.
This year’s strong focus by the G7 on climate change has been, reportedly, led by German chancellor Angela Merkel.
At the moment, the G7 includes Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK, and the USA. The grouping was previously known as the G8, but Russia was kicked out after its annexation of Crimea from Ukraine in 2014.