One after another, European countries are abandoning coal energy this year. Back in April, both Austria and Sweden shut down their last coal-fired plant, with Sweden doing so two years ahead of schedule.
Now another country is saying goodbye to coal two years early: Portugal!
This week, Portuguese energy utility EDP announced the closure of its Sines coal power plant, bringing forward the shutdown from 2023 to 2021. In addition to Sines, the company is preparing to close one more plant and convert another unit in Spain, EDP said in a statement. The move was hailed by climate campaigners pushing for a quick phase-out of coal power, the most polluting fossil fuel.
“Portugal had already accelerated its coal phase-out of coal from 2030 to 2023. The fact that it is being brought forward yet again to 2021 shows just how fast a country can clean up its energy system when it commits to clean energy and climate action,” said Kathrin Gutmann, director at Europe Beyond Coal Campaign.
Seven more countries are expected to end coal by 2025: France (2022), Slovakia (2023), Portugal (2023), the UK (2024), Ireland (2025), and Italy (2025), according to Europe Beyond Coal.