The leaders of Britain’s three main parties have pledged to end power generation from coal plants that don’t use emissions-capturing technology, and to push for a global climate deal, according to a document published on Saturday.
The agreement did not give any timeframe for phasing out the plants. But campaigners welcomed the cross-party announcement and said Britain was the first major economy to make such an explicit promise.
Prime Minister David Cameron, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg and the leader of the opposition Ed Miliband said that acting on climate change “is an opportunity for the UK to grow a stronger economy, which is more efficient and more resilient to the risks ahead.”
The pledge comes ahead of a national election in Britain in May and a day after almost 200 nations agreed a draft text for a global climate deal expected in Paris at the end of the year.
The British politicians will push for an internationally binding agreement in Paris which limits temperature rises to 2 degrees Celsius, they said.
Many countries are seeking to cut greenhouse gas emissions but few have such a strong cross-party consensus. Some countries such as Russia have said the 2 degree target should not necessarily be the basis of a new global deal.