FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Nicole Rodel, Communications Campaigner, Oil Change International, firstname.lastname@example.org
Romain Ioualalen, Global policy lead, Oil Change International, email@example.com
Civil society reacts to announcements from the Beyond Oil and Gas Alliance at COP27
16 November – Today, the Beyond Oil and Gas Alliance (1), a diplomatic initiative of countries and subnational actors that have committed to phasing out oil and gas production in line with the objectives of the Paris Agreement, announced new supporters (Washington State is the newest sub-national core member, while Fiji, Tuvalu, Kenya and Chile expressed their intention to join as friends of BOGA) and an initial support of USD 10 million funding facility to support developing countries in planning a just transition away from oil and gas. Civil society had recently outlined expectations (2) for BOGA and recommendations for its success.
Romain Ioualalen, Global Policy lead at Oil Change International, said: “Hearing BOGA members reiterate their call for a phase out of oil and gas production is a breath of fresh air at a COP in which the fossil fuel industry has tried to suffocate climate action. It’s also very encouraging to see more countries express their support to this initiative. The fossil fuel crisis triggered by Russia’s war against Ukraine is a stark reminder that continuing to power the world economy with fossil fuels is a climate and energy security dead end.
The success of BOGA will be judged on its members implementing their pledges and to convince more countries to keep fossil fuels in the ground, and to support developing countries in this transition. It is therefore encouraging to see that some BOGA members have delivered on their promise to end fossil fuel exploration since joining the Alliance, but we expect more clarity from the alliance on how it intends to deal with its “friends” that are actively pursuing more fossil fuel extraction, like Italy.
BOGA remains more than ever an important initiative and we urge all countries, in the first instance rich producing countries, to align with its level of ambition and to end fossil fuel exploration once and for all”.
Catherine Abreu, Director and Founder of Destination Zero, said: “The world is not facing an energy crisis – we are facing a fossil fuel crisis, and the Beyond Oil and Gas Alliance is one of the beacons lighting our way out. BOGA’s resilience through this year of fraught geopolitics, gas market volatility and fossil fuel industry rapaciousness is a testament to the fact that phasing-out oil and gas production isn’t just good environmental policy, it’s good economic policy. A funding facility to support just transitions away from oil and gas is precisely the kind of visionary support countries have been asking for here at COP27. It will be important to see that facility replenished by Alliance members after this initial phase. The science is unequivocal: immediately ending expansion of fossil fuels and making a rapid, just transition to efficiency and renewables is our only hope of limiting warming to 1.5°C. Kudos to BOGA members for seeing the truth, and taking action.”
Lavetanalagis Seru, Regional Policy Coordinator at Pacific Islands Climate Action Network, said: “The continued expansion of oil and gas production is an existential threat to Pacific nations, which the Beyond Oil and Gas Alliance members are trying to address.
It is essential that more countries join this group of leaders in ending all fossil fuels, and we are hoping that having Fiji and Tuvalu in this group will help amplify the voices of vulnerable Pacific nations. In the face of attempts by the fossil fuel industry to slow down vital climate action, we hope Pacific nations leadership will inspire major producing countries like Australia to step up and New Zealand to end all oil and gas exploration once and for all”
Mohamed Adow, Director of Power Shift Africa, said: “Africans know first hand the devastating impacts that burning oil and gas is doing to the climate. So it’s good to see at this African COP the members of BOGA coming together to phase out oil and gas production. This is the kind of prophetic and visionary actions we hoped would come from meeting on African soil. It’s the leadership we need to see if we’re going to see this ship around and start heading in the right direction. Getting rid of coal alone is not going to save the planet. If we want to keep the Paris goals and fend off the worst ravages of climate breakdown, countries are going to have to do the hard work of phasing out oil and gas and leaving them in the ground. This is a message which needs to be heard.”