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UN: Excess Global Fossil Fuel Production will Undermine Goal of Limiting Global Temperatures

Written by on November 8, 2023

A new United Nations report says the amount of fossil fuels produced in 2030 will far exceed the levels needed for the world to alleviate global warming.

The study by the U.N. Environment Program says 20 of the world’s major fossil fuel producing nations are on track to produce about 110% more oil, gas and coal in 2030 than the amounts consistent with limiting global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees celsius.

Holding down global temperatures to a 1.5 degree increase compared with pre-industrial levels was a key goal of the global climate pact signed in Paris in 2015.

The 20 countries in the report include Australia, Brazil, Russia, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and the United States, which account for 82% of fossil fuel production and 73% of consumption.

The report says none of them have committed to reducing production of oil, gas and coal to levels that would meet the 1.5 degree Celsius threshold. Many of those countries have continued to offer government subsidies or tax breaks to fossil fuel companies, while others produce oil through state-owned enterprises.

The report was also produced by experts with the Stockholm Environment Institute, the

International Institute for Sustainable Development, and research groups Climate Analytics and E3G.

Some information for this report came from The Associated Press, Reuters, Agence France-Presse.


FILE – Oil Pump jacks work at dusk near Barnes City, Texas, Nov. 1, 2023. Major fossil fuel-producing countries still plan to extract more than double the amount of fossil fuels in 2030.

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