Today, G7 leaders released a joint communique, marking a significant failure to build on the momentum from last year’s UN COP28 decision to transition away from fossil fuels.

New Oil Change International data shows that G7 nations are not leading on climate either at home or abroad. G7 countries represent 27% of global oil and gas production, and will be responsible for nearly 48% of CO2 pollution from planned oil and gas expansion – the equivalent lifetime emissions of nearly 600 coal plants. They are also major providers of taxpayer finance for international fossil fuel projects, providing USD $25.7 billion a year in international public finance for fossil fuels, compared to USD $10.3 billion for clean energy. 

G7 nations are some of the world’s wealthiest and most powerful economies. They have the moral responsibility and economic ability to take the lead in implementing last year’s landmark COP28 agreement to transition away from fossil fuels. 

This summit was the first opportunity for the G7 to reflect the landmark COP28 agreement to phase out fossil fuels in its decision text, and the last time the group of countries will meet before COP29, where they will agree to a new climate finance goal and submit updated climate plans to 2035.

Today’s communique is released one day after the Bonn climate talks were marked by silent major fossil fuel producers on the COP28 fossil fuel phaseout decision. 

In response, Bronwen Tucker, Public Finance lead at Oil Change International, said: 

“Our leaders are not leading. In the hottest 12 consecutive months of recorded human history, our leaders are failing us. G7 countries are adopting an inadequate coal phase out date and endorsing increased fossil gas production, sending a terrible signal at a time when countries should be focusing on accelerating the phase out, not delaying it.

“G7 leaders can’t say they’re committed to a livable climate, while expanding and bankrolling the fossil fuel industry at home and abroad. At the same time, these rich countries should not be congratulating themselves for delivering $100 billion for climate finance two years too late. Trillions are needed to cover climate damages and the G7’s finance was largely provided as loans which only worsens unjust debts. 

“The G7 have a responsibility to pay up for climate action. As they point fingers to other countries to contribute to the climate finance goal at COP29 later this year, they should instead lead by example and pay their fair share on fair terms without worsening one of the most widespread debt crises in history. The money has always been there – the G7 have just been giving it to the wrong things like fossil fuel handouts.  

“The G7 must end the billions of dollars in taxpayer finance still flowing to fossil fuel projects abroad and fund the buildout of affordable renewable energy on fair terms. If their oil and gas expansion plans are allowed to proceed, it will lock in climate chaos and an unlivable future.”

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