UAE plans to have it both ways as Cop28 climate summit host

Posted: January 8, 2023 by oldbrew in climate, COP28, Energy, government, net zero, Politics
Tags: , ,

Work this one out. Hydrocarbon production is booming in the UAE, due to high demand. Its Dubai International Airport is the world’s busiest by passenger numbers. Next year it will host a conference that in theory at least wants to knock all that on the head, because… climate etc. At COP27 it fielded dozens of oil and gas lobbyists.
– – –
If there was a sign the United Arab Emirates is taking its role as host of the next UN climate talks seriously, the 1,073 delegates it registered to attend the Cop27 summit in Egypt would be it, says Climate Home News.

The Persian Gulf petrostate came out in force in Sharm el-Sheikh with the second largest delegation in the history of climate summits, including 70 oil and gas lobbyists – a flavour of what is to come.

The UAE takes on the UN climate talks presidency from the Egyptians at the end of November next year, when it hosts Cop28 on the site of the Dubai Expo.

The Emirates are seeking international clout as the Gulf’s most proactive nation on climate action. It was first in the region to set a 2050 net zero goal. And at Cop27, it became the first to announce absolute emission cuts, instead of from a hypothetical business-as-usual baseline.

But its plan includes expanding oil and gas production, which is incompatible with limiting global warming to 1.5C [Talkshop comment – according to some climate theorists]. The UAE has pitched its role as providing the world with reliable and low-carbon intensity oil and gas for decades to come.

“The UAE is known as a responsible supplier of energy and will continue to play this role as long as the world needs oil and gas,” president Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan told the leaders’ summit at Cop27.

Two-pronged approach

In its climate diplomacy, the UAE is pursuing a two-pronged approach: an aggressive campaign to fund thousands of megawatts of clean energy at home and overseas and even greater efforts to boost its oil and gas production.

It is on the defensive, as the case for leaving fossil fuels in the ground gets more vocal. In Sharm el-Sheikh, more than 80 countries pushed to extend language on phasing down unabated coal power to oil and gas, but petrostates blocked it from formal negotiation. The issue is not going away.

“The Emiratis will find it difficult to deal with a fast-moving debate on fossil fuels, given their economy is structured around oil and gas,” Glada Lahn, a senior research fellow at London-based think tank Chatham House. “Sharm showed that the tide is turning. What’s missing are the great examples of diversification – the UAE could definitely elevate its work on that.”

A federation of seven emirates and home to nearly 10 million people, the UAE is the world’s eighth biggest oil producer in absolute terms and the second biggest per capita.

The discovery of commercial oil in the late 1950s bought enormous riches to Abu Dhabi, the largest of the emirates, where almost all of the country’s oil is pumped.

Today, the UAE says it has the world’s sixth largest crude oil reserves and seventh largest gas reserves.

It has made efforts to diversify the economy away from oil – grasping the need to do so earlier than most of its neighbours. Tourism is a key growth sector. Dubai is becoming a business and financial services hub.

Yet, more than half of government revenues still depend on the oil and gas industry, according to Carbon Tracker.

Full article here.

  1. saighdear says:

    Well maybe they’re just being pragmatic about the whole thing. My Ideals are being sorely squeezed too. Oil doesn’t just fuel the wheels of industry, it LUBRICATES them too and is a valuable source of derivatives. What could we do without it? Wooden Lenses ?

  2. Countries are divided into the haves and the have nots. Countries that have used fossil fuels were the haves, of those, the Western Countries, many of them, are already have nots. China and Russia and India and some others have become the haves and are building coal power plants to mine and process materials and build wind and solar power to sell to the increasing new have nots.

  3. oldbrew says:

    Meanwhile, climate miserablists moan about one proposed North Sea oil well 🙄
    UAE’s ADNOC to invest $127 bln in 2022-26 as oil, gas reserves rise

    Imagine if the UK had come up with a plan like that pre-COP 26. Uproar from the usual climate alarmist suspects.
    – – –
    Other quotes from the CHN article:
    — Al-Jaber told the government the event, which will coincide with the UAE’s national day on 2 December, is expected to welcome more than 140 heads of states and over 80,000 delegates at the Dubai expo site – more than double the size of Cop26.
    . . .
    — “The UAE have been able to brand themselves as a version of southern Spain or Ibiza although below the surface they have similar issues as their neighbours: exploited labour force, political prisoners and a police state”
    . . .
    — “It is not hydrocarbons or solar, not wind or nuclear or hydrogen. It is all the above,” Al-Jaber told The National, an Abu Dhabi newspaper owned by the royal family.
    – – –
    So more energy conference than climate conference, which is fine but let’s stop pretending otherwise.

  4. catweazle666 says:

    “more than 140 heads of states and over 80,000 delegates at the Dubai expo site”

    I wonder how many private jets that will require…

  5. Peter Norman says:

    There is a wise Middle East proverb: “If you do not know what destination you want to arrive at, it does not matter which direction you chose to follow”.

  6. ivan says:

    No matter what hype is generated by these gab-fests they, in reality, are nothing more than a well paid holiday in the sun for those attending.

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