A credible G7 just energy transition partnership with the global south
The most difficult part will be financing the support to the social costs of the fossil fuel transition. In India, this involves displacement risks and costs to the very large coal and thermal power sectors, with over a million workers, several hundred thousand formal employees, pensioners, trade union workers, and social services. Transition plans will need to be designed, by the countries themselves, to allow least social cost and capture significant co-benefits (air quality). The fossil energy sector cannot be expected to be suddenly reduced and will continue to provide critical energy security options (for possibly decades). Plans to accelerate available options (reducing highest-cost plants, shifting to ‘cleaner’ coal, delaying new capacity additions) will need strong social safety nets for disadvantaged communities and states. In turn, this will require specialized financing commitments, with multi-year programmatic features, and cost-support through external grants and concessional funding from the global North.