The COP28 President Al Jaber, who also is head of Abu-Dhabi National Oil Company, claimed there was “no science” supporting that we need to phase out fossil fuels to stay below 1.5℃. He has also been a strict advocate for the “phase down” and “abated” use of fossil fuels. All of which are untrue and dangerous distractions in light of the looming problem. In the final two days of COP28 he is going to have to produce a text all countries can agree on, and civil society is concerned this will be a text that suits Big Polluters, but does not provide needed outcomes that do what is necessary to stay below 1.5℃ warming on average.

For the United States, doing our fair share hinges on phasing out oil, gas, and coal as we are the largest producer of oil and gas in the world. Not only that, but we need a fast, fair, and funded phase out of fossil fuels globally in order to prevent catastrophic warming. Developing nations need quality funding that allows them to provide energy and services to their people without relying on fossil fuels. As the largest historical emitter, it is up to the US to lower additional emissions internationally by 14 billion metric tons CO2 equivalent by 2030 to make up for the emissions that caused this problem in the first place. To be the climate leader it wants to be, the US must support a phase out of fossil fuels, provide additional financial support, and recognize fair shares as an equitable framework for informing future climate action that is needed in the final days of COP28. 

This leadership will be critical given the fossil fuel friendly positionality of the COP28 Presidency and what is expected in the final text. We need to phase out fossil fuels now! Or maybe the United States will hide behind the UAE, knowing the US is not really in this fight either, being the largest oil and gas producer in the world. We have a choice. What will it be?  

The US Fair Shares Collaborative calls on the Biden Administration to do what is right, and to make sure we fight for a realistic agreement that will put us on a path of success. 

  • Fossil Fuel Phase Out
  • Appropriate Funding and Support to Developing Countries 
  • Contributing the US’s fair share to the global effort in our Next NDC

It is important to note that the US is taking positions they know other oil-producing countries will not accept in order to appear to voters as climate champions. They are doing this while positioning themselves to lay blame on countries who have few options other than oil, and are providing no offers of international cooperation to transition.