Two weeks prior to COP28, a coalition led by 350.org and Oil Change International, comprising over 100 organizations, express grave concerns in an open letter regarding the energy strategy outlined by the COP28 president in two recent communications.
The open letter demands a full, fast, funded, and fair phase-out of fossil fuels instead of sidelining critical outcomes on energy in pledges as opposed to the formal outcome and promoting unrealistic distractions such as carbon capture and storage.
The letter is signed by over 100 organizations from more than 50 countries. Signing organizations include CAN International, Greenpeace International, and Powershift Africa among others. The open letter is a response to COP28 president Al Jaber raising concerns by laying out expectations for COP28 in two letters to diplomats and civil society published in November and October which sidelines an ambitious outcome on fossil fuels and energy.
“The Cop28 President’s leadership clearly is under scrutiny. Sultan Al Jaber is the CEO of one of the largest oil companies on the planet while he has to deliver a decision to phase out fossil fuels and phase in renewable energy in line with 1.5 degrees as President of COP28. After his latest letters we have reasons for even bigger concerns and challenge the COP28 President to get behind a decision to rapidly phase out fossil fuels and phase in renewable energy instead of speaking of pledges and technologies like CCS we know wont deliver in the foreseeable future.” Andreas Sieber Associate Director of Campaigns and Policy 350.org
“The COP28 president has a unique power and responsibility to conduct impartial negotiations that prioritize the needs of people worldwide over the interest of the fossil fuel industry. The success of COP28 will be judged by whether countries formally agree to end fossil fuel expansion and build a just and equitable phase out of all fossil fuels, enabled by providing the necessary funding to triple renewable energy and doubling energy efficiency. We urge the COP28 Presidency to focus on achieving that outcome instead of expanding scarce diplomatic time and capital promoting voluntary pledges and initiatives that at best can become distractions from the main negotiations and might in fact end up greenwashing the fossil fuel industry’s bet on climate failure.” Romain Ioualalen, Global Policy Manager at Oil Change International.
The open letter emphasizes the need for the energy package outcome at COP28 to be a formal part of the COP28 decision text rather than relegated to voluntary pledges and stresses the importance of clear and formal decisions on ending fossil fuel infrastructure expansion and a phase-out of all fossil fuel production and use, rather than relying solely on voluntary pledges from the oil and gas industry.
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