There is approximately 2,000 GW of coal-based generation capacity remaining worldwide, despite widespread recognition of coal’s strong negative impact on climate change. While a phase-out of coal is occurring, the process is slow given the scale of the challenge and limited economic alternatives. For developing countries, coal mine retirement bears significant social, economic, and political challenges. The transition requires a programmatic, multi-decade approach that is multi-faceted in nature across jobs, skill sets, environmental issues, and finance.
Developing regional transition strategies, strengthening local and regional institutions, and building the capacity to implement large social protection, education, and economic innovation programs, along with the implementation of kick-start projects are key to successful and just coal phase-out plans. Yet, many countries lack the capacity and funds to actualize these initiatives, leaving many governments frustrated by the inability to demonstrate real progress in the coal sector transition.