Watered-down accord on coal “a missed opportunity” says Flemish PM

The Flemish Prime Minister Jan Jambon (nationalist) has described the accord on coal reached at the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow as “a missed opportunity”. Nevertheless, Mr Jambon is pleased that the negotiators did succeed in reaching an accord at all. Speaking on VRT Radio 1’s morning news and current affairs programme ‘De ochtend’, Mr Jambon said that it is disappointing that the final accord reached in Glasgow had been watered-down under pressure from India and China

"I haven’t yet had the opportunity to read the accord myself, but when I hear that countries like China have exerted pressure not to include anything about coal in the agreement I feel that it is a missed opportunity."

However, the Flemish Government has also come under criticism for not setting the bar high enough with in its plans to tackle climate change. The Flemish Climate Plan aims to reduce carbon emissions in our region by 40% by 2030. This is below the target set by the European Commission. 

Mr Jambon responded by saying that "The targets set by Europe won’t be confirmed until the end of next year. There is still some margin for negotiation”.

"Flanders is the most densely populated area in the whole of Europe and has a lot of industry. We are making a lot of effort in the fields of innovation and technology. Things that are being developed here can be exported worldwide. In this way too we are making a contribution”, Mr Jambon said. 

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