NatWest to phase out funding for coal

It's the most polluting of fossil fuels, and a target for climate campaigners.

Now it's getting steadily harder to fund new investment in coal.

Britain's NatWest says it won't lend to any new customers operating coal-fired power plants.

Nor will it lend to existing customers wanting to increase their capacity.

Chief Executive Alison Rose says it will phase out all lending to coal in the UK by 2024, and globally by 2030.

"We want to be part of helping transition and end harmful activity. So for oil and gas companies, which is a relatively small part of our balance sheet, we will only work with companies that have a credible transition plan to net zero."

The move comes as world leaders meet at the U.N. climate summit in Scotland.

There the finance sector is being pushed to help cap global warming by marking it harder to invest in polluting projects.

On Thursday NatWest was one of a number of firms to join the Powering Past Coal Alliance.

That's an international campaign aimed at phasing out the fuel.

Coal still produced about 37% of the world's electricity in 2019.

A cheap, abundant local supply means it dominates power production in countries like Poland, South Africa and India.

Making the shift to cleaner energy will require huge investment around the world.

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