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climate change

Xi Jinping may have just signaled the end of international coal financing

International funding for coal may have just met its end.

Chinese President Xi Jinping said during his video address to the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday that Beijing will no longer build coal plants overseas and instead support developing countries in the transition to green and low-carbon energy. 

Politico's Karl Mathieson notes that China is by far the largest financer of international coal, and considering the next largest backers — Japan and South Korea — previously made similar commitments, the practice will no longer have much, if any, actual weight behind it.

While Xi's announcement appears to be a big deal, Belinda Schäpe of climate think tank E3G points out that China still hosts more than 50 percent of the world's coal fleet, so Beijing still needs to "lend credibility" to its domestic climate targets and unveil a clear timeline for phasing coal out at home.