France ends export subsidies for coal before climate talks

Obama Power Plants State Impact

PARIS (AP) — The French government is ending export subsidies for building coal plants abroad, as the country tries to clean up its environmental reputation before hosting landmark U.N. climate talks.

Prime Minister Manuel Valls announced Thursday the immediate end to the coal credits, primarily used by French group Alstom, which exports its technology and builds plants in several countries. Alstom did not immediately respond publicly.

Environment Minister Segolene Royal said on France-Info radio that the government would instead provide subsidies for French companies building renewable energy plants abroad.

The French government has come under fire for its environmental record ahead of the U.N. conference in Paris, which begins Nov. 30.

The government on Thursday kicked off three months of climate-related events aimed at raising French awareness of global warming before the talks.

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