What You Need to Know.
- Two years ago, governments at COP26 agreed to “phase down” the use of unabated coal. This year, countries remain split on specific language concerning fossil fuels more broadly.
- A draft version of the climate agreement for COP28 provides three different options for the future of fossil fuel use. The first requires the parties of COP28 to commit to “an orderly and just phase out of fossil fuels,” while the second would instead commit to “accelerating efforts towards phasing out unabated fossil fuels and to rapidly reducing their use so as to achieve net-zero CO2 in energy systems by or around mid-century.” The third option would contain no text on this point. Saudi Arabia’s energy minister has already rejected any language that would phase out fossil fuels. And at the same time, NGO reports have sharply criticized the outsized role of fossil fuel lobbyists at COP28, especially at a time when the stakes are high for the energy transition.