The Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has advised its members to reject any fossil deal at the UN summit in Dubai.
This posture of the oil cartel has since been met with reproach by leaders from Germany, France and Spain.
According to the Energy Minister for France, OPEC’s stance puts “most vulnerable countries” in danger.
After negotiators at the summit had drafted a document advocating the phasing out of fossil fuels, the OPEC Secretary General, Haitham Al Ghais issued letters to the bloc’s 13 member countries asking them to thwart any fossil fuel phase-out deal.
“Proactively reject any text or formula that targets energy i.e. fossil fuels rather than emissions,” the letter said.
Reacting angrily to the directive by the OPEC, the Energy Minister for France, Agnes Pannier-Runacher said “I am stunned by these statements from OPEC. I am angry….. OPEC’s position endangers the most vulnerable countries and the poorest populations who are the first victims of this situation.”
Spain’s Ribera said “I think that it is quite a disgusting thing that OPEC countries are pushing against getting the bar where it has to be.”
Ribera hinted that the European Union would be involved so as to align with a majority of parties present at the summit in order to yield some positive outcomes in the discussions about the phasing out of fossil fuels.
Meanwhile, the oil cartel has responded to critics of its stance, saying that “there’s no single solution or path to achieve a sustainable energy future.
The body stressed that the issue of climate change require “realistic approaches” in its tackling.
“We need realistic approaches to tackle emissions; one that enable economic growth, help eradicate poverty and increase resilience at the same time,” said the letter.
Nonetheless, the COP28 Director General Majid al-Suwaidi has expressed optimism and confidence that “we’re going to get a good result that you’re going to be surprised about, he told the press.