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COP28 President: There Is ‘No Science’ Behind Calls for Fossil Fuel Phase-Out

There is “no science” that says the world should phase out fossil fuels to curb global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius, according to Sultan Al Jaber, the president of the COP28 climate summit, the Guardian and the Centre for Climate Reporting report.

“There is no science out there, or no scenario out there, that says that the phase-out of fossil fuel is what’s going to achieve 1.5C,” Al Jaber said in an online event last month, the remarks from which the Guardian reported on December 3, days after the COP28 summit in Dubai began on November 30.

Al Jaber made those comments in response to questions from Mary Robinson, the chair of the Elders group and a former UN special envoy for climate change.

The remarks from Al Jaber draw criticism from scientists and are in contrast with the view of Antonio Guterres, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, who said at the climate summit on Friday,

“The science is clear: The 1.5C limit is only possible if we ultimately stop burning all fossil fuels. Not reduce, not abate. Phase out, with a clear timeframe.”

Al Jaber’s presidency of COP28 has stirred controversy in recent months. He is the first CEO designated to be president of any climate summit so far. But he is also the chief executive of the national oil company of OPEC's third-largest producer, the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Last week, Al Jaber denied reports of plans to use the climate summit in Dubai to push oil deals.

Earlier last week, the BBC and many other news outlets reported that the UAE planned to use its role as the host of climate talks to forge new oil and gas deals. The BBC cited leaked briefing documents obtained by independent journalists at the Centre for Climate Reporting working alongside the BBC. Those documents were purportedly prepared by the UAE’s COP28 team for meetings with at least 27 foreign governments during the climate summit which Dubai will host from November 30 to December 12.


By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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  • George Doolittle on December 04 2023 said:
    I don't think the United Nations Secretary General is involved in any consensus of anything whilst claiming a phase out of all fossil fuels period as what is necessary to create right proper environmental conditions for whatever is the problem now currently claimed to be impacting the entire Climate of Planet Earth a broad subject indeed as well.
  • steve Clark on December 04 2023 said:
    the BIG problem with "climate change" is we cannot say what is the background or natural climate change and what is the man made portion....If we cannot do that we are wasting our efforts.

    We cannot even come close to answering what is the natural portion...
  • Mamdouh Salameh on December 04 2023 said:
    Indeed there is no science behind calls for a phasing out of fossil fuels.

    In fact Nobel prize scientists are themselves divided about the real causes of climate change.

    While a majority of them agree that fossil fuels are a major contributor to emissions, many distinguished scientists say that fossil fuel contribution is very little in volume to cause climate change and that there are astronomical factors beyond humanity’s control behind climate changes.

    Fossil fuels are quint-essential for the functioning of the global economy and life on earth. As such they should be allowed to contribute to global energy demand side by side with renewables.

    Dr Mamdouh G Salameh
    International Oil Economist
    Global Energy Expert

  • George Kafantaris on December 04 2023 said:
    What did we expect when we put the fox to guard the henhouse?

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