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Fossil Awards to Norway, Japan and Australia, Ray awards to Scotland, India at COP26 Day 2


Photo: Angus Taylor spruiking Santos Gas and CCS. Photo courtesy @RichieMerzian

Today had a plethora of awards, both good and bad. Norway snatched the first fossil award of the day for pushing gas with CCS. Japan is still promoting fossil coal power plants on the justification that they are necessary to integrate renewable energy, not only in Japan, but also throughout Asia. For Australia the award was for Enegy Minister Angus Taylor for selling Australian fossil fuels and our future down the toilet so brazenly with gas company Santos at the Australian pavillion.

The awards aren’t all negative. Scotland received a Ray of the Day for putting £1m from their Climate Justice Fund into Loss and Damage. Much needed real leadership on Loss and Damage finance. And India’s substantial increased commitments for 2030 were truly an unexpected  highlight of the Leaders Summit National Statements for their Ray award. 

Media Release – 2 November 2021, Climate Action Network International

Today´s list of Fossil Award winners is as long as the queues at COP.

The First Fossil of the Day Award goes to Norway.

Norway likes to play the climate champion but behind closed doors, new prime minister Jonas Gahr Støre is gaining a reputation as a fossil fuel cheerleader. The Labour leader, who’s only been in charge for a few weeks, has, apparently, boasted to media that “Norwegian gas is not the problem, but part of the solution for a successful transition to renewable energy” especially if combined with carbon capture and storage (CCS).

He positions the land of the midnight sun’s fossil fuel production as a solution for the billion people who don’t have access to electricity and has an interesting interpretation of the International Energy Agency and United Nations calls for an end to new fossil exploration. In Støreworld this only applies to large coal producers but not Norway.

Before COP, his government was caught red-handed by the media lobbying the IPCC to declare CCS a fix for continued fossil production. Alongside calling for further oil and gas development, his government has joined Russia in arguing against the EU Commission’s potential blacklisting of drilling in the Arctic.

As if that wasn’t enough, not a single Norwegian climate target has ever been met, the petroleum industry is the largest source of domestic emissions and exported emissions of Norway’s petroleum industry are around ten times higher than national emissions.

Throwing sovereign wealth fund money (worth an eye-watering $1.4 trillion and built through petroleum exports) at climate finance initiatives is one thing but giving huge bailouts to the petroleum industry during the COVID-19 pandemic on top of existing subsidies is just a step too far.

The Second Fossil of the Day Award goes to Japan

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida told the assembled Glasgow crowd that Japan promotes fossil power plants because they are necessary to integrate renewable energy, not only in Japan, but also throughout Asia.

Despite a coal phase out being set as a priority goal for this COP, the land of the rising sun aims to continue using coal power plants beyond 2030 and even towards 2050. Furthermore, he has had deluded dreams of using ammonia and hydrogen as “zero-emission thermal power”. He needs to wake up and understand that these novice and costly technologies are linked to fossil fuel extraction and would leave little chance of meeting the global 1.5C degrees targets. We need real world commitments to halt rising temperatures and a coal phase out by 2030 and not fossil fuel nightmares.

The Third Fossil Award goes to Australia, again!

And for a second day running our antipodean cousins receive yet another fossil of the day award – they’re going to need a bigger trophy cabinet.

So called Emissions Reductions Ringmaster Angus Taylor came to COP only to be unmasked as a vaudevillian mastermind selling Australian fossil fuels and our future down the toilet.

This morning he held a joint press conference in the Australian pavilion – with Santos, your friendly neighbourhood gas company to talk CCS with a majestic model of how they are going to bury emissions in their own backyard.

Spending public money on a technology theme park that 20 years on is still unproven is taking a hell of a risk and delaying climate action. Can they make it a Fossil Award hatrick – findout tomorrow.

Ray of the (yester)day for Scotland

A hurRAY for Scotland, dear hosts of COP and Monday’s response to the escalating loss and damage from irreversible climate impacts. It’s a miniscule amount in the grand scheme of things but by putting £1m from their Climate Justice Fund to support “communities to repair and rebuild from climate-related events, such as flooding and wildfires” they’re setting a precedent that the richer nations must follow.

 We need funding mechanisms that acknowledge the scale of the problem and a roadmap for delivery. Scotland will get extra points from us if they now do more to start meeting their relatively strong legal emissions targets and come out and declare their opposition to plans to drill for yet more oil in the Cambo field off the coast of Shetland, applying pressure on the UK Government to use their powers to block it.

Ray of the Day – India

After Monday’s 2070 emissions target announcement, in a quick turnaround, India has redefined itself as a COP26 climate champion. This shock ‘ray of the day’ award comes after it made bold *near-term commitments* to meet 50% of its energy requirements from renewables by 2030. 

And that’s not all folks. 

A staggering reduction of one billion tons of CO2 emissions by 2030 and reduction of carbon intensity by 45% have also been announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. These commitments will move India towards a low-carbon development pathway essential for a resilient future.

The announcement by Modi at the World Leaders Summit adds to the positive momentum on mitigation ambition and also demands developed countries to raise their targets based on equity and science and provide finance to the developing countries. 

Ray of Day is awarded to India for their bold and concrete actions for 2030 which encourages other countries to follow suit. Hope you are listening China!

==END==

About the fossils: The Fossil of the Day awards were first presented at the climate talks in 1999, in Bonn, initiated by the German NGO Forum. During United Nations climate change negotiations (www.unfccc.int), members of the Climate Action Network (CAN), vote for countries judged to have done their ‘best’ to block progress in the negotiations in the last days of talks.

About CAN: The Climate Action Network (CAN) is a global network of over 1,500 Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) in more than 120 countries working to promote government and individual action to limit human0induced climate change to ecologically sustainable levels.

Climate Action Network (CAN) is a global network of more than 1,500 civil society organisations in over 130 countries driving collective and sustainable action to fight the climate crisis and to achieve social and racial justice. CAN convenes and coordinates civil society at the UN climate talks and other international events.

www.climatenetwork.org

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