Biden halts financing of carbon-intensive projects abroad

i24NEWS - Reuters

3 min read
President Joe Biden speaks at the Chase Center in Delaware, United States, on December 11, 2021.
AP Photo/Carolyn KasterPresident Joe Biden speaks at the Chase Center in Delaware, United States, on December 11, 2021.

Biden’s move comes as the president pledged his federal government to be carbon neutral by 2050

United States President Joe Biden ordered the US government to immediately halt federal aid for new carbon-intensive fossil fuel projects overseas. 

According to US diplomatic cables, the order further prioritizes global collaborations to deploy clean energy technology.

The cables noted that US government engagements should reflect the goals set in an executive order issued at the beginning of the year aimed to end American financial support of coal and carbon-intensive energy projects abroad.

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"The goal of the policy... is to ensure that the vast majority of US international energy engagements promote clean energy, advance innovative technologies, boost US clean-tech competitiveness, and support net-zero transitions,” a cable said, Reuters reported.

“Except in rare cases where there are compelling national security, geostrategic, or development/energy access benefits and no viable lower carbon alternatives accomplish the same goals.”

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“Carbon-intensive” international energy engagements are defined by the policy as projects whose greenhouse gas intensity is above a threshold lifecycle value of 250 grams of carbon dioxide per kilowatt-hour and includes coal, gas, or oil.

Any US government financing of overseas coal projects that do not capture or only partially capture carbon emissions is banned. 

The order exempts projects that are deemed to be needed for national security or geo-strategy, or those that are crucial to delivering energy access to vulnerable areas.

Biden’s move comes as the president pledged his federal government to be carbon neutral by 2050.