International alliance is forming to quit oil and gas

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The governments of Denmark and Costa Rica today launched the first international government coalition to end oil and gas production.

Members of the Beyond Oil and Gas Alliance (BOGA), who introduced their group to the COP 26 climate talks in Glasgow, Scotland, argue that more oil and gas must remain in the ground if the world is to sustain the warming of 1.5 degrees Celsius. benchmark, beyond which experts warn against drastic climate impacts worldwide.

“Continued investments in increasing oil and natural gas production encourage the construction of supply and consumption infrastructure, locking in a high carbon trajectory beyond 2050 and thus contributing to climate change. dangerous, while increasing the risk of stranded assets. The group wrote in its call to action.

Major oil-producing countries, including the United States, have not joined in the effort to pull out of oil. A spokesperson for the UK, one of Europe’s major oil-producing countries, told POLITICO earlier this week that a sudden halt in fossil fuel production would have serious consequences of its own.

“What we can’t have is a cliff where oil and gas is abandoned overnight. If we stopped producing gas, it would endanger UK energy security, jobs and industries, and we would be even more dependent on foreign imports, ”a spokesperson for the UK Department for Energy and Energy said. .

The countries to join the alliance this week are France, Greenland, Ireland, Sweden and Wales, as well as Quebec, the Canadian province. They are committed to fully support. California signed on as an associate member.

While the group does not call for strict bans on new drilling permits, its “core members” pledge not to lease new production or exploration contracts for oil and gas. They are also forced to set a sunset target for oil and gas production. Lower-level supporters like California pledge to take “real action” to reduce oil and gas production.

BOGA notes in its statement that while the world is to reduce oil production by 4% per year until 2030, and then at a more accelerated pace in subsequent years, current plans anticipate the opposite.

The International Energy Agency has said that a 75% reduction in oil demand by 2050 would be needed to achieve net zero carbon emissions by mid-century, a target set for states -United by President Biden. To reach this level of decline, no new oil and gas exploration would be necessary, experts said.

The alliance aims to restrict the supply of oil and natural gas and the expansion of drilling operations to help the world move away and send clear signals to the market that oil is on its way to disappear.

BOGA has gathered supporters from environmental groups, although many of the more progressive activists have criticized the Glasgow talks as a climate theater lacking firm commitments to reduce escalating global greenhouse gas emissions.

“This broad alliance can help steer the world away from the fossil fuels that are driving climate change towards disaster,” said Sujatha Bergen, senior counsel at the Natural Resources Defense Council. “It’s time to take a strong step and make a strong commitment, with the help of this alliance, towards a safer and cleaner future for our children, families and communities. ”

Kassie Siegel, director of the Climate Law Institute at the Center for Biological Diversity, applauded California Governor Gavin Newsom (R) for joining this “pioneer club” to curb drilling.

“Newsom has created tremendous momentum towards its vision of an oil-free future for our state,” she said, before turning to a demand for more aggressive action to reduce California’s oil supply. . “Now Newsom must build on this momentum to immediately halt approval of new statewide oil and gas drilling to keep these climate-destructive fossil fuels in the ground.”

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