No New Coal Mines
For the leaders of Pacific nations that lie just metres above sea level, climate change is a matter of life and death.
That's why His Excellency Anote Tong, former President of the Republic of Kiribati, wrote to world leaders ahead of the Paris climate summit, asking them to back a global moratorium on new coal mines and coal mine expansions.
"What we are talking about is survival, it's not about economic development... it's not politics, it's survival," - President Tong.
Several other Pacific Island nations immediately backed the President's call, calling for global moratorium on new coal mines, and for carbon emissions to be capped at a level that will stop global average temperatures rising more than 1.5 degrees Celsius when they appeared before the United Nations.
Since No New Coal Mines was launched, the United States, China and Indonesia have announced domestic moratoria on new coal mines.
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Pacific Island countries are now considering the world’s first treaty banning new fossil fuel projects. Following decisions to stop new coal mines in China, the USA and Indonesia, the Pacific’s lead could be the first step towards a global moratorium on coal mines.
There's been some very exciting developments recently in the push for a global moratorium on new coal mines.
The Obama Administration has announced a moratorium on granting new coal mine leases on federal land while it examines its entire coal leasing program -- a process they estimate to take three years. This policy mirrors the announcement by China in the last days of 2015, that they would impose a three year moratorium on Chinese coal mine approvals.