COP28 Climate Deal Calls for Moving Away from Fossil Fuel


Negotiators at the COP28 climate summit in the United Arab Emirates on Wednesday agreed on final agreement, urging nations for the first to move away from fossil fuels to avert the worst impacts of climate change.

The COP28 kicked off in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Dubai, on Nov. 30 and was scheduled to close on Dec. 12 evening, but as negotiations didn’t close, the final session is expected to take place later today.

“Representatives from 197 countries, in addition to the European Union, at the COP28 on Wednesday approved the historic “UAE Consensus” on climate change,” UAE state news agency WAM said.

The final agreement text contains 196 articles over 21 pages, WAM added.

The agreement, described as a historic deal, is expected to mark for the first time that nations agree at a UN climate summit to explicitly address fossil fuels and the need to move away from oil, natural gas, and coal to limit global warming.

Why COP28 climate conference extended until Wednesday?

The COP28 climate talks went beyond their planned duration on Tuesday as countries have been making diplomatic efforts to address substantial global disagreements related to the treatment of fossil fuels in the summit’s final document.

Several nations expressed disapproval of the initial draft agreement unveiled on Monday due to its lack of support for a gradual reduction in the use of fossil fuels.

They denounced the initial draft for being insufficient in its efforts to control emissions.

Instead of calls to phase out fossil fuels, the document suggests that parties could implement measures to reduce “both consumption and production of fossil fuels, in a just, orderly and equitable manner so as to achieve net zero by, before, or around 2050 in keeping with the science.”

Although Canada, the US, the EU, the UK, Japan, and Australia and small island nations, among others, supported the draft, it encountered strong resistance from members of the OPEC oil producer group and its allies.

Saudi Arabia has consistently objected to the inclusion of language opposing fossil fuels in the COP28 talks.

However, it’s crucial to highlight that other members of OPEC and OPEC+, including Iran, Iraq, and Russia, have also demonstrated reluctance towards an agreement aiming to gradually eliminate the use of fossil fuels.

Some African nations argued that any deal should specify that affluent countries, with a track record of significant fossil fuel production and consumption, assume a leading role in reducing their usage.

Meanwhile, China, the largest contributor to global greenhouse gas emissions, maintained an uncertain stance on the initial draft.

Representatives from small island nations have declared their unwillingness to support any agreement that would essentially act as a death sentence for countries most severely affected by rising sea levels.

The result of this conference will send a powerful signal to international investors and markets about governments’ commitment to either phase out the utilization of oil or uphold its role in the coming years.

Many scientists attribute fossil fuels as the main source of greenhouse gas emissions and global warming.

Despite the substantial increase in renewable energy in recent times, nearly 80% of the world’s energy is still generated by oil, gas, and coal.

Source : aa