Nations pledge to stop oil and gas production
An alliance of national and regional governments led by Denmark and Costa Rica today at COP26 officially committed their countries to phase out oil and gas production.
The Beyond Oil & Gas Alliance (BOGA) measure is clear: The world must stop producing oil and gas with a firm end date.
It also calls on countries to end any new round of licensing or leasing sales with immediate effect.
“Our goal is not small; our ambition is not modest. We hope that today marks the beginning of the end of oil and gas, ”Dan Jorgensen, Danish Minister for Climate, Energy and Utilities, said at the launch.
He said the world doesn’t want words, but “bold and tangible action and that’s what the Beyond Oil & Gas Alliance is here to deliver.”
“There is no future for oil and gas in a 1.5 degree world,” Jorgensen said.
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Alliance co-founders Denmark and Costa Rica have already lined up 10 other members – the national governments of France, Greenland, Italy, Ireland, Portugal, Sweden and New Zealand, the decentralized government of the United Kingdom of Wales, the state government of California in the United States and the Canadian provincial government of Quebec.
Major BOGA members such as France, Greenland and Ireland have pledged to end any new concessions, licenses or lease cycles for oil and gas production and exploration and to set a date aligned with Paris to end the production and exploration of oil and gas in the territory over which they have jurisdiction.
Meanwhile, Associate Members, including Portugal, will have taken “important concrete steps” that help reduce oil and gas production, such as reforming subsidies or ending international public financial support to international companies by upstream.
BOGA, which made its voice heard in ministerial meetings at COP26, plans to appoint new members in the coming days, according to Jorgensen, who added that the alliance was speaking to the UK’s decentralized Scottish government, among others. governments he refused to Name.
The UK, host of the climate summit, will not be attending anytime soon, sources said.
Denmark canceled its latest licensing round late last year and announced it would launch new North Sea oil and gas exploration, as part of a broader plan to stop extraction of fossil fuels by 2050.
Another key BOGA member, Sweden, will put in place legislation next year banning both gas and coal production and exploration on Swedish territory, a minister from the Scandinavian nation said.
Sian Bradley, senior researcher at Chatham House international affairs think tank, said today marked “a watershed moment for climate leadership.”
“It is now widely accepted that we need to phase out coal, but the need to take decisive action on oil and gas has so far been absent from climate commitments,” Bradley said.
“Now, at COP26, the need to phase out oil and gas is finally on the political agenda in response to the political courage of Denmark and Costa Rica. “
Of the two founding members, Denmark will take the lion’s share of the upstream impact. Denmark produced 103,000 barrels of oil per day in 2019 – making it then the second largest crude producer in the European Union after the United Kingdom – and a total of 3.2 billion cubic meters of gas .
On the other hand, Costa Rica has never produced oil although an American independent was awarded in 1998 four exploration blocks in the Limon basin on its Caribbean coast after a license hiatus of more than 30 years.
Three subsequent governments imposed a moratorium on exploration, but Andrea Meza, Costa Rica’s new Minister of Environment and Energy said there is a strong commercial and political lobby for the exploitation of the country’s hydrocarbon resources.