Oil-producing countries’ plans on fossil fuels are not in line with Paris limits

Despite all of their growing climate ambitions and net zero commitments, major oil-producing governments still plan to produce more than double the amount of fossil fuels in 2030 than would be compatible with limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius. , based on the 2021 output gap. Report, by leading research institutes and the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP).

The annual report, first launched two years ago, measures the gap between governments’ projected production of coal, oil and gas and production levels consistent with meeting global warming mitigation targets included in the Paris Agreement.

Two years later, the 2021 report finds that the output gap has barely changed.

Over the next two decades, governments collectively predict an increase in global oil and gas production, and only a modest decrease in coal production. Together, these plans and projections predict an increase in total global fossil fuel production until at least 2040.

“The devastating effects of climate change are there for everyone to see. There is still time to limit long-term warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius, but that window of opportunity is closing quickly, ”said UNEP Executive Director Inger Andersen.

“At COP26 and beyond, governments around the world must step in, taking swift and immediate action to close the fossil fuel production gap and ensure a just and equitable transition. “

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The report provides country profiles for top 15 producing countries: Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Germany, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Norway, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom and United States. United.

Country profiles show that most of these governments continue to provide significant political support for fossil fuel production.

What energy transition?

Of these countries, only the UK and Indonesia are expected to produce less oil and gas in 2030 compared to 2019.

“Global production of coal, oil and gas must begin to decline immediately and sharply to be compatible with limiting long-term warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius,” said Ploy Achakulwisut, lead author of the report and scientist at the report. Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI).

“However, governments continue to plan for and support levels of fossil fuel production that far exceed what we can safely burn.”

The report finds that governments around the world plan to produce around 110% more fossil fuels in 2030 than would be compatible with limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius, and 45% more than what would be compatible with 2. degrees Celsius. By 2040, this projected surplus production increases to 190% and 89%, respectively.

Production plans call for 57% more oil, 71% more gas, and about 240% more coal by the end of this decade than would be consistent with limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius.

Guterres calls for a change in funding

“The recent announcements by the world’s largest economies to end international coal financing are an essential step in phasing out fossil fuels. But, as this report clearly shows, there is still a long way to go towards a clean energy future, ”said UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.

“There is an urgent need for all remaining public and private financiers, including commercial banks and asset managers, to shift their financing from coal to renewables to promote the full decarbonization of the power sector and access to energy. renewable for all. “

The report found that countries have spent more than $ 300 billion in new funds on fossil fuel-related activities since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic – more than they have on clean energy.

On the other hand, international institutional funding for the production of fossil fuels has declined considerably in recent years.

A third of multilateral development banks and G20 development finance institutions have adopted policies that exclude fossil fuel production activities from future financing.

“The early efforts of development finance institutions to reduce international support for fossil fuel production are encouraging, but these changes must be followed by concrete and ambitious fossil fuel exclusion policies to limit global warming to 1.5. degree Celsius, ”said Lucile Dufour, Senior Policy Advisor. , International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD).

“Fossil fuel producing countries must recognize their role and responsibility in closing the production gap and steer us towards a secure climate future,” added Mans Nilsson, Executive Director of SEI.

“As countries increasingly commit to net zero emissions by mid-century, they must also recognize the rapid reduction in fossil fuel production that their climate goals will require. “

The report is produced by SEI, IIDD, ODI, E3G and UNEP.

Simple but powerful truth

Costa Rica’s Environment and Energy Minister Andrea Meza said: “This report shows, once again, a simple but powerful truth: we must stop pumping oil and gas from the sol if we are to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement. We need to cut with both hands of the scissors, simultaneously meeting the demand for and the supply of fossil fuels.

“This is why, together with Denmark, we are leading the creation of the Beyond Oil and Gas Alliance to end the expansion of fossil fuel extraction, plan for a just transition for workers and start cutting production.” existing in a managed manner. . “

Denmark has already taken the decision to cancel all future licensing rounds for oil and gas and to completely phase out our production by 2050, ”noted Dan Jorgensen, National Climate Minister, ‘Energy and Utilities.

“With Costa Rica, we encourage all governments to take similar action and join the Beyond Oil and Gas Alliance to promote a phased and managed phase-out of fossil fuel production,” Jorgensen said.

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