Multinationals opening new gas sites, despite climate change warnings

© Kevin Dietsch, AFP

Although scientists keep insisting that the planet needs to move away from its dependence on oil, gas and coal to effectively combat climate change, hydrocarbon development projects continue to emerge. Several countries, cities and NGOs are calling for a non-proliferation treaty on fossil fuels.

Within the next few years, multinational companies such as Qatar Energy, Gazprom, Saudi Aramco, ExxonMobil, Petrobras, Turkmengaz, TotalEnergies, Chevron and Shell are planning to open new gas and oil production sites. These projects alone could put a strain on the carbon budget available to limit the effects of global warming.

In a report unveiled on Wednesday at COP27, the US NGO Oil Change International revealed that new fossil fuel projects approved, or in the process of being approved between 2022 and 2025, could lead to 70 billion tonnes of CO2 being emitted into the atmosphere over the course of their operation. Projects approved in 2022 alone are responsible for 11 billion tonnes of CO2, the equivalent of China's annual emissions.

"Unfortunately, fossil fuels still account for 80 percent of the world's energy mix today. We are not successfully accelerating the energy transition," says Bréon. "And every new fossil fuel project takes us further off course and reduces our chances of staying below 1.5°C."

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