International financial institutions — like the World Bank — need to transition energy investments beyond coal to clean energy. More importantly, those scarce development dollars need to be spent in a strategic way given that they are only a small percentage of a trillion dollar global energy economy. Ultimately, the best use of those funds will be to expand clean energy access at a household level by investing in distributed clean energy companies working beyond the grid.
Media reports have linked the US Export-Import Bank (Ex-Im) to plans to open enormous coal mines in Australia's Galilee Basin, and then dredge within the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Site to expand shipping channels to take the coal to Asia. Despite worldwide uproar over the proposals, Ex-Im refuses to deny the links. Should Ex-Im approve financing for the projects, our taxpayer dollars will be supporting the destruction of the Great Barrier Reef.
The World Bank, along with USAID, propose to close 450MW of old inefficient coal power (Kosovo A), rehabilitate one 600MW coal plant (Kosovo B), and construct one 600MW lignite plant (Kosovo C).
Tata Mundra is a failing project. Even its backers admit it is running at unsustainable losses. Now, the company is asking for a bailout from the Indian government in the form of higer electricity rates for consumers to cover the costs, putting the price of electricity beyond the reach of the people it was supposedly built to help.