Saturday, October 13, 2018

World Bank Abandons Last Coal Project

Workers in the control room of Kosovo A, a Tito-era coal plant the government wants to replace (Photo Credit: Karl Mathiesen) Click to Enlarge.
Kosovo C was the last exception to the World Bank’s no-coal rule.  But it could not escape the new market reality of cheap renewables.

Chief executive Jim Yong Kim ended speculation about a prospective loan guarantee to the power plant this week, at a civil society event in Bali.

“We are required by our by-laws to go with the lowest cost option and renewables have now come below the cost of coal.  So without question, we are not going to [support the plant],” he said.

That does not mean the project is dead.  The Kosovan government still backs it and developer Contour Global is seeking alternative sources of finance.  But it shows the World Bank’s pivot to clean energy is permeating through the organisation.

In perhaps even bigger news, the bank is increasing pressure on private sector partners to follow suit.  The head of its International Finance Corporation, which works with 2,000 clients across 125 countries, announced it would “proactively seek” those looking to exit coal and demand more transparency on any remaining coal projects.

Read more at World Bank Abandons Last Coal Project

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