BrandArena: COP28 must respond to the call for a fossil fuel phase out - Greenpeace

Monday 11 December 2023

COP28 must respond to the call for a fossil fuel phase out - Greenpeace

As COP28 commences for a second week, negotiators in Dubai will be challenged to respond to the need for a commitment to a Fossil Fuel Phase Out. Never before have we heard so many voices from so many different directions urging us to grab the opportunity and resolve to phase out oil, coal, and gas. Alternative formulations on fossil fuel phase-out have never made it this far into a draft document before. However, there is no guarantee that a decision on fossil fuels will be made, so everything is still up in the air.

Thandile Chinyavanhu, Climate and Energy campaigner, Greenpeace Africa said: “Africa is making promising steps away from the outdated extractive practices of fossil fuel industries which for decades have locked communities in conflict, human suffering, and ecological death. We must encourage further development driven by innovation rooted in pan-Africanism. To achieve this future, we need our leaders to push back against further attempts at neo-colonial plundering of resources on the continent at the expense of Africans.”

Kaisa Kosonen, Head of the Greenpeace COP28 delegation said: “We are here to make fossil fuels history. By now governments know they can’t leave this summit without an agreement to end fossil fuels, in a fast and fair manner. Now the question is what is the package of solutions, support and cooperation that will get us over the finishing line. Developed countries are the ones that need to take the lead here.

The solutions are ready – a fast and fair transition to renewable energy is possible – but it won’t happen fast enough unless we push the fossil fuel industry out of the way. And when it comes to money, just look at who made record profits last year – it’s the fossil fuel industry! There’s enough money in the world to deal with this crisis, but it has to be redirected from problems to solutions, so that polluters are made to pay.”

“COP28 can’t be called a success if there are no renewable energy targets and a full, fast, fair and funded fossil fuel phase-out. After the hottest decade ever, anything less is dropping the ball.

China is the world’s biggest wind and solar producer. And it can respond to climate change on par with wealthy countries, while also sharing many of the same concerns as developing countries. This in-between role actually enables China to unlock those entangled negotiations in week two. The China-US Sunnylands statement provides keys for unlocking solutions here, but we still need to see them in action here in Dubai,” says Yuan Ying, China Chief Representative, Greenpeace East Asia.

According to Ghiwa Nakat, Executive Director, Greenpeace MENA, “Nobody wins a trophy at half-time, but this COP certainly got off to a strong and hopeful start. The historic consensus to operationalise the new Loss and Damage Fund could be a real lifesaver for frontline communities if the responsibility of developed countries to lead in resourcing the fund is recognised in the final COP decision.

Nakat noted however, that "such announcements are not enough if we don’t have a planet to live on. We’ve got to stop fueling more loss and damage. Everything so far has been just a prelude to what we really want to hear – the commitment to a just and equitable phaseout of all fossil fuels by mid-century, coupled with key milestones for this critical decade.”

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