UK unconvinced on climate commitments

The UK says new oil and gas licenses could still match Perfide Albion’s climate commitments. What about Cop 21?

English Prime Minister Boris Johnson calls on the international community (during the COP 26 climate summit) to meet the highest temperature target in the Paris Agreement, Climate Home News relays the site. In contrast, the International Energy Agency indicated this year that there is no room for new oil and gas production in a 1.5°C scenario.

Curiously, the British elite still justify further development of offshore oil fields on the grounds that they would generate less carbon than imported hydrocarbons.

It should be a transition, not an extinction. Closing the taps would jeopardize energy security but also threaten British jobs. This will make us more dependent on foreign imports.”, tweeted the Secretary of Trade and Energy, Kwasi Quarteng, confirming this hypothesis.

import, a less “green” option

In this context, the British government is proposing a checkpoint before the new round of licensure, with a decision to proceed or not to proceed based on six criteria. In fact, London says that producing its own oil and gas is more environmentally friendly than the import option.

Of the six proposed tests, three are related to emissions from oil and gas production. These emissions come from oil and gas companies that leak and burn methane as a by-product and use fossil fuels to power ships, helicopters and machinery.

The other two tests focused on climate. The first calls for consideration of so-called “Scope 3” emissions, which come from the end use of oil and gas. The second considers the global production gap: that is, the world produces more fossil fuels than it can burn by 1.5 °C.

Read also: EU may run out of oil by 2030

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About the Author: Forrest Morton

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