GLOBAL INDUSTRY

The science says we need to keep fossil fuels in the ground to meet climate goals. We’re pushing back against industry spin saying otherwise.

OVERVIEW OF WORK

The oil and gas industry is on a public relations campaign to convince investors, financial regulators, and the public at large that they deserve continued support as “part of the solution” to the energy transition. Oil Change is working to challenge these narratives and provide analysis to the financial sector, movement allies, and other decision makers to support a shift away from fossil fuel finance. Further, we are working to reform international energy scenarios that currently guide investment decisions towards failure in meeting the Paris Agreement climate goals and, concurrently, are used by the oil and gas industry to justify dangerous expansion plans.

Following years of campaigning and pressure by Oil Change and others, in 2021, the International Energy Agency (IEA) released its first ever fully fledged energy scenario aligned with limiting global warming to 1.5ºC. Critically, the IEA concluded that: “There is no need for investment in new fossil fuel supply in our net zero pathway,” and, therefore, “there are no new oil and gas fields approved for development in our pathway.” We are using the IEA’s conclusion that 1.5ºC alignment means no new oil and gas fields to hold governments, companies, banks, and investors accountable to backing up ‘net zero’ commitments with an end to new oil and gas finance.

LATEST PROGRAM POSTS

A new peer-reviewed study published in Environmental Research Letters finds that existing oil, gas, and coal extraction sites need to be closed down to stay within 1.5C. The study, led by researchers at Oil Change International and the International Institute for Sustainable Development, finds that nearly 40% of developed fossil fuel reserves need to stay in the ground to keep the 1.5°C limit in reach.


Today, Oil Change International and over 150 other civil society organisations from all over the world sent an open letter to International Energy Agency (IEA) director Dr. Fatih Birol, urging him to center 1.5 degrees Celsius (ºC) in the 2021 World Energy Outlook (WEO). The IEA is due to release the WEO in one month, on October 13, 2021.

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LATEST PROGRAM RESEARCH

This briefing gives financial institutions an overview of the IEA's first 1.5°C-aligned scenario and what it means for oil and gas. We show that the IEA's conclusion about ending new oil and gas field development is not a product of scenario design; it’s the arithmetic of 1.5°C.

The COVID-19 crisis poses a threat to people's health, their jobs and their lives, and like all crises, exacerbates already existing inequalities. Trillions in public finance will be needed to get through the current pandemic. This briefing outlines why continuing to rely on fossil fuels, in particular oil and gas, is not compatible with long-term recovery. It does not make sense to use the COVID-19 stimulus packages to try to revive a sunsetting industry which will not deliver on economic recovery, only to shut it down a few years later to meet climate goals.

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