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23 Jul, 2023 13:41

Major fossil fuel producers cause rift among G20

Saudi Arabia and Russia reportedly opposed the group’s green energy proposals
Major fossil fuel producers cause rift among G20

Saudi Arabia and Russia have prevented a consensus from emerging among the Group of 20 major economies on a road map to phase down the share of fossil fuels in the global energy mix, Reuters has reported.

The G20 energy transition ministers held a four-day summit that ended on Saturday in the Indian state of Goa where they discussed ways to achieve global net-zero greenhouse gas emissions.

The summit ended without a consensus because major fossil fuel producers, including Saudi Arabia and Russia, opposed a proposal to triple G20 countries’ renewable energy capacity by 2030, Reuters reported, citing its sources.

China, the world’s largest consumer of energy, as well as coal exporters South Africa and Indonesia, also opposed the plan, the agency added. India, the world’s most populous country and which currently generates 75% of its total power from coal, reportedly took a neutral stance on the issue.

As a result of the disagreements, the ministers issued an outcome statement and a chair summary instead of a joint communique. A joint communique is issued when complete agreement among members on all issues is achieved.

According to the statement, “different national circumstances” drove “some members” to support a phase-down of unabated fossil fuels, while “others had different views” and suggested that “abatement and removal technologies” would address environmental concerns associated with the use of fossil fuels.

“Fossil fuels currently continue to play a significant role in the global energy mix, eradication of energy poverty, and in meeting the growing energy demand,” reads the statement.

The document mentioned a number of technologies for countries to use “as per national priorities,” such as carbon capture, usage and storage (CCUS), a technology that can capture and make effective use of the high concentrations of CO₂ emitted by industrial activities.

The G20 comprises 19 nations and the European Union. The group’s aim is to address major issues related to the global economy, such as international financial stability and climate change. Together, the G20 member countries account for over three-quarters of both gross domestic product and global emissions.

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