UK Leasing

‘Beyond Oil’ alliance adds members, but rejected by UK climate summit host

General view of the Johan Sverdrup oil rigs from Equinor in the North Sea, Norway, December 3, 2019. REUTERS / Ints Kalnins // File Photo

  • Beyond Oil and Gas Alliance aims to end fossil fuel supply
  • Alliance has yet to include major oil and gas producers
  • Member countries seek to increase political pressure

GLASGOW, Nov. 11 (Reuters) – A fledgling international alliance to stop further oil and gas drilling added six members to the United Nations climate conference on Thursday, but failed to gain support from any major fuel producer fossils nor from the British government, host of the talks.

The lack of more general support reflects the difficulty of imposing comprehensive policies to end the production of fossil fuels even as countries agree that the emissions from their combustion must be significantly reduced.

France, Greenland, Ireland, Sweden, Wales and the Canadian province of Quebec joined the Beyond Oil and Gas Alliance, formed by Denmark and Costa Rica in September.

None of the members, who pledge to stop issuing drilling permits and possibly ban oil and gas production in their territory, has substantial production.

Describing itself as a group of “pioneers,” BOGA seeks to step up pressure to end the supply of fossil fuels and has said he hopes the additions to his alliance will open the door for other nations to join. .

“Our ambition is for this to be the beginning of the end of oil and gas,” Danish Climate Minister Dan Jorgensen told Reuters. “We hope this inspires others.”

He told reporters he was “in close dialogue” with Scotland, where the UN talks are taking place and where most of the UK’s oil and gas is concentrated. The British central government is in charge of oil and gas permits.

BOGA does not prohibit activities such as oil refining or the consumption of oil and gas products, focusing only on upstream production.

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Major oil and gas producers notable for their absence included Russia, Saudi Arabia and the United States.

US President Joe Biden’s administration is seeking to claim leadership in the fight against climate change, but legal wrangling has so far prevented it from achieving Biden’s expressed ambition to end new oil leases and gas on federal lands.

The United States, the world’s largest producer of oil and gas, aims to decarbonize its economy by 2050.

Britain does not intend to halt domestic oil and gas production, but is revamping licensing rules to reduce emissions associated with upstream production.

“As the UK’s dependence on fossil fuels continues to decline, the need for oil and gas will continue but will decline over the next few years,” a government spokesperson said.

Many developing countries in Africa, the Middle East and Latin America have said they need the revenues from future oil and gas extraction to raise their standard of living and finance their eventual transition to sources of oil and gas. cleaner energy.

Greenland, Ireland, France and Denmark have announced legislation to stop issuing new oil and gas licenses and the latter two to end fuel extraction in their territories by 2040 and 2050 , respectively.

New Zealand, which has banned new offshore oil licenses, and the U.S. state of California, which plans to end oil and gas extraction in 2045, have joined BOGA as lower-level members.

Countries can become second-tier members of BOGA if they have taken steps to limit oil and gas production, for example by ending its overseas public funding or reforming fossil fuel subsidies. .

The International Energy Agency has said there should be no investment in new fossil fuel supply projects if the world is to limit the global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2, 7 Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial levels. Read more

Scientists say maintaining this limit, a target of the 2015 Paris international climate agreement, would avoid the worst effects of climate change, but the government’s current climate policies would fall well short of the target.

Negotiators at the COP26 summit in Glasgow hope to find ways to keep the 1.5 ° C target within reach.

Reporting by Kate Abnett and Shadia Nasralla, additional reporting by Elizabeth Piper; edited by Barbara Lewis

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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