July 18, 2024

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Fossil fuel companies sign up to emissions reduction pact at UN climate conference

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Fifty of the world’s top fossil fuel companies have promised to eliminate emissions from their own operations by the middle of the century as part of a package of controversial pledges unveiled at a UN climate summit in Dubai.

ExxonMobil, TotalEnergies, BP and Shell were among the companies to agree to set or tighten voluntary deadlines for emissions reductions, along with state energy companies Saudi Aramco and the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company. None agreed to reduce hydrocarbon production.

The companies, which represent about a third of global oil and gas production, also pledged to stop routine flaring of excess gas and to eliminate almost all leaks of methane, a potent greenhouse gas, by 2030.

The main state energy companies of Iran, China, Mexico, Kuwait, Venezuela and Russia did not participate. Chevron, which did not sign the charter, said it welcomed the effort but required “more clarity on the framework”. It would focus on delivering its own lower carbon targets, it said.

The moves were part of a series of energy commitments brokered by Sultan al-Jaber, president of the COP28 summit and Adnoc chief executive, in the run-up to the summit.

Some 116 countries have endorsed the COP28 presidency’s aim to reach an agreement on tripling installed renewable energy capacity and doubling the annual rate of energy efficiency by 2030.

“We can do this,” Sultan al-Jaber told world leaders as he announced the climate deals.

However, the pledge covering oil and gas industry operations addresses only 15 per cent of the total greenhouse gases the energy sector is responsible for contributing to global warming.

The agreement disappointed climate experts by steering clear of addressing the carbon dioxide released when fuels are burnt, which make up the bulk of the industry’s greenhouse gas emissions.

Critics said the pledges largely…

2023-12-02 10:59:18

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