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Saudi Arabia Wants To Be a Leader in All Kinds of Energy, Not Just Oil

Saudi Arabia is now focused on all kinds of energy and is taking climate change and the efforts to fight global warming seriously, according to the energy minister of the world’s largest crude oil exporter. 

“We as a country, we are no longer called a leading oil-producing country ... we would like to be called an energy producing country, all kinds of energy,” Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz Bin Salman said at a mining conference in Riyadh on Wednesday, as quoted by Reuters

Fossil fuel production in Saudi Arabia will continue, but the Kingdom will work on reducing emissions from fossil fuels, he said.   

“People are still interested in continuing to produce fossil fuels. However, like us, and we should be calling on everybody to do this, we have to work on mitigating these fossil fuels,” Prince Abdulaziz Bin Salman added.  

Last month, during the COP28 climate summit in Dubai, Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman told Bloomberg that the Kingdom would not endorse any text that calls for the phase-down of fossil fuels at the COP28 summit. 

Saudi Arabia will “Absolutely not” be happy to have the language “fossil fuels should be phased down,” the Saudi minister said. 

COP28, which ran one day into extra time amid heated debates on the future of fossil fuel use and production, ended with a compromise text referencing for the first time a call to all parties to transition away from fossil fuels. But the final agreement was watered down compared to any references to phasing out or phasing down of fossil fuels, as objections from many oil exporting countries – led by Saudi Arabia – held back talks in the final days and sent the conference into overtime. 

Saudi Arabia and its state oil giant Aramco have repeatedly said that the focus of the energy sector and the debates should be on how to cut emissions, not on reducing oil and gas production. 

Speaking at the Energy Intelligence Forum in October, Aramco’s chief executive Amin Nasser said that the Saudi oil giant is working on renewables, e-fuels, hydrogen, and carbon capture and storage (CCS). But the world will need oil and gas for decades and renewables won't meet this need for decades, he added.

The additional oil and gas demand over the coming decade needs new upstream investments to offset the 5-7% annual decline rates, Nasser noted.  


By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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  • Mamdouh Salameh on January 10 2024 said:
    Saudi Energy Minister Prince AbdulAziz bin Salman is probably the best known energy minister in the world and an energy expert in his own right.

    Moreover, he has a great ability of making remarks on the most complicated energy issues in a most lucid and logical manner with a great sense of humour.

    Prince AbdulAziz wants to make Saudi Arabia an energy leader encompassing not only oil, gas, renewables and hydrogen but also carbon catching and storage (CCS).

    Saudi Arabia has great oil and gas resources and access to the latest technologies so it is capable of succeeding in its quest as it did in oil.

    However, the Saudi Energy Minister sticks to his views that oil is here to stay well into the future and therefore oil production should continue at the highest level to satisfy global demand but with a lot of efforts to reduce emissions.

    He also makes it clear that he doesn’t see renewables capable of satisfying global demand for electricity well into the future.

    Dr Mamdouh G Salameh
    International Oil Economist
    Global Energy Expert

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