The shift to low-carbon energy must be systematic

About 50 persons from the Extinction Rebellion CZE and Fridays For Future movements demanding a solution to the climate crisis and an end to coal burning gathered in front of the Czech Government Office today, protesting a coal commission meeting.

The protesters placed a "2025 - End of the coal age" sign on the Government Office (Straka Academy) building.

Police officers and members of the anti-conflict team were present at the silent demonstration.

The coal commission is tasked with slowing down coal mining in the Czech Republic and adjusting the energy infrastructure of the country to accommodate renewable and nuclear energy sources.

The 19-member commission, headed by Environment Minister Richard Brabec (ANO) and Industry and Trade Minister Karel Havlicek (for ANO), is to meet every month.

Brabec said the first results of the commission's meetings were expected by late 2020.

"We are here to support the commission's steps that lead towards the end of coal burning. We want to point out that according to experts, it is possible to reach carbon neutrality on a short-term timeline and that the Czech Republic has the capacity to do so. We would like the coal commission to take this information into account and act accordingly," Extinction Rebellion CZE spokeswoman Silvie Ledinska told CTK.

The Hnuti DUHA, Zeleny kruh and Greenpeace CZ environmental movements want the coal commission to clearly say this year when coal mining in the Czech Republic could end.

Employer unions warn of shutting down all coal plants immediately. The Czech Chamber of Commerce and the Confederation of Industry stated earlier that the shift to low-carbon energy must be systematic, gradual, affordable and sensibly planned.

On Friday, Extinction Rebellion activists blocked access to the Regional Development Ministry for two hours, requesting that the state starts decreasing fossil fuel emissions.

At the beginning of this month, about 20 persons also protested in front of the Environment Ministry, pointing out the government's inadequate progress in fighting climate change.

Source: CTK

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