Ending fossil fuel use is ‘inevitable’, UN climate summit President Sultan Al Jaber said.
“Phasing down fossil fuels is inevitable and it is essential – it’s going to happen,” said Al Jaber, in an interview with the Guardian. “What I’m trying to say is you can’t unplug the world from the current energy system before you build the new energy system. It’s a transition: transitions don’t happen overnight, transition takes time.”
Al Jaber had attracted criticism from environmental campaigners that pointed out the COP28 President also heads the United Arab Emirates’ national oil company Adnoc.
The COP28 President will be presenting his plan for the crucial climate change talks today in front of ministers from 40 countries during an EU meeting.
The plan is likely to focus on goals to triple renewable energy production. A global assessment of the progress countries have made since the 2015 Paris agreement will also be made, although Al Jaber has decided against naming the countries that fell behind.
Another controversial proposal is that fossil fuels are included in COP28 talks, as part of a “global alliance” that they have formed.
“They [oil and gas companies] are not being seen as part of the solution – so we need to stop that perception,” he said. “They must be invited, they must be given the responsibility, and they must be held accountable, through a proper monitoring arrangement.”
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Key climate change talks in COP28 will likely lead to further compliance changes.
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