As the United Nations’ annual climate summit, COP28, continues, controversial comments from conference president Sultan Ahmed al-Jaber have disrupted the event, raising questions about how much of a new fossil fuel deal that will emerge from the conference will be of substance. This raises questions about whether it will become a reality.
At a meeting a week before the conference, Javer — United Arab Emirates Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology and Chairman of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company He told the committee that he believed there was no such thing. 1.5 degrees Celsius.
“There is no science or scenario that phasing out fossil fuels will achieve temperatures of 1.5 degrees,” Jaber said at a climate panel in late November hosted by the climate change nonprofit Sea Changes Climate. First reported by the Guardian. Additionally, he seemed completely opposed to phasing out fossil fuels. Return to the cave. (He later said the phase-out was “inevitable” and “essential.”)
As Vox’s Umair Irfan explained, most countries previously agreed to try to limit global average temperatures to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial global average temperatures. The idea is that limiting temperature rise to 1.5°C is the most realistic strategy to minimize extreme weather events and other forms of climate change. Because of the international significance of this number, Jaber’s critics perceived his comments as undermining research into the causes of climate change and as a threat to the COP’s goals.
Climate scientists have called Jaber’s statements inaccurate, with some saying they are reminiscent of arguments the fossil fuel industry is known for.by Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change 2023 Report, Greenhouse gas emissions, mainly caused by fossil fuel use, need to be cut by almost half by 2030 to keep temperature rise below 1.5°C. Scientists also worry that even limiting temperature rise to that level may be too slow and the goal may no longer be sustainable. For example, as Irfan pointed out, 2023 may be the first year in which the global average temperature exceeds 1.5°C.
“Mr Al Jaber’s comments are ridiculous and annoying, demonstrating ignorance of the science and denial of the need for rapid decarbonization, which is at the very heart of the proceedings he is in principle presiding over as COP28 President. “It betrays both attitudes,” Michael Mann, a climate scientist at the University of Pennsylvania, told Vox.
Jaber’s comments also directly contradict statements from many world leaders, including UN Secretary-General António Guterres, who said on Friday: Not to reduce it, not to weaken it. phase out with clear deadlines. ”
Jaber has since responded to the backlash, insisting that he is focused on ensuring “science is at the heart of everything we do” and that his statements were “incorrect”. He claimed that there were “reports that In her remarks Monday, Jaber reiterated that she believes “the phasing out and phasing out of fossil fuels is inevitable,” and that this is something she previously called change. This was also a comment I made at a panel.
His comments at the panel meeting only deepened existing scrutiny of Jaber’s leadership of the COP, given his role as head of the state-run oil and gas company. He reportedly took advantage of this position. To further the business interests of the UAE. (He denied these allegations.)
His remarks came as participants in annual climate change talks engage in heated debate over the future of fossil fuels and consider agreements that could significantly curb or eliminate their use in the future. Ta.as CNBC coverage, many climate experts believe that this year’s COP will not be considered a success unless delegates reach an agreement on phasing out the use of fossil fuels, a decision that some countries may second-guess. Stepping on it. Those calling for a weaker option advocate “phasing down” fossil fuel use, reducing rather than eliminating it.
Jaber’s previous comments raise uncertainty about how actively countries will participate in the COP agreement, which aims to reduce fossil fuel use.
Jaber’s comments on fossil fuels are at the center of a huge debate.
As several climate experts have emphasized, scientific evidence directly contradicts Jaber’s statements.as NPR’s Rebecca Herscher writes:, Scientific research has shown that fossil fuel use and carbon emissions must be significantly reduced to limit global temperature rise. Hirscher explains: “According to the most comprehensive global scientific consensus report on climate change, to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius, carbon dioxide emissions must be reduced by 80% compared to 2019 levels by 2040, We need to achieve a 99% reduction by 2050.”
Achieving these goals will require significant cuts, if not zero, in fossil fuel production. There are just over 16 years left until 2040. That’s why climate experts and activists hope to see world leaders emerge at this year’s COP with aggressive but actionable plans to quickly phase out fossil fuels. As summit members debate next steps to reduce fossil fuel use, there are significant disagreements over available approaches, which could have a measurable impact on efforts to keep temperatures below 1.5°C. There is a possibility of giving.
The debate over “phasing out” or “phasing out” is one of the key points of contention. While climate scientists have pushed hard for the former as a way to rapidly curb emissions from oil and gas, Mr. Jaber and fossil fuel industry officials have kept the door open to the latter. Phasing would result in more gradual reductions in fossil fuel use over time.
“The outcome of COP28 must be that all oil, gas and coal countries of the world recognize that this is indeed the beginning of the end of the fossil fuel era for the global economy. , we’re starting to properly bend that curve,” said Johan Rockström, director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research. told CNBC.
Jaber’s comments raise concerns about how strong the fossil fuel deal will be from the summit, and given his remarks at the “She Changes Climate” event, where he appeared to be critical of phase-out. , raising the question of where exactly he stands on this issue. “I have said many times that the phase-out and phase-out of fossil fuels is inevitable. In fact, it is essential and needs to be orderly, fair, just, and responsible.” Jaber said at a press conference on Monday.