General Electric to exit coal fired power plants as focus shifts to renewable energy

WORLD – The United States industrial giant General Electric (GE) has announced that it would shut or sell coal fired power sites as it prioritises its renewable energy and power generation businesses.

In a press release, GE announced that its Steam Power business will work with customers on existing obligations as it pursues this exit, which may include divestitures, site closings, job impacts and appropriate considerations for publicly held subsidiaries.

Russell Stokes, GE’s senior vice president, said: “With the continued transformation of GE, we are focused on power generation businesses that have attractive economics and a growth trajectory.

“As we pursue this exit from the new build coal power market, we will continue to support our customers, helping them to keep their existing plants running in a cost-effective and efficient way with best-in-class technology and service expertise.”

GE said it would continue to service existing coal power plants but warned jobs could be lost as a result of its decision.

The company’s Steam Power business will continue to work with its clients on existing projects as the company moves to exit the market. GE Steam Power will continue to deliver turbine islands for nuclear power plant and service existing nuclear and coal plants.

Responding to the company’s decision, US environmental group Natural Resources Défense Council energy policy manager Han Chen said: “GE’s backing for coal projects would have locked in new carbon emissions, local pollution, and economic harms across the globe, for decades – at a time when clean, affordable energy solutions abound and costs to build and install these systems are plummeting.

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