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The 50 fossil companies celebrated by COP28 send 60% of the global carbon budget to smoke

global carbon budget

Photo by Markus Spiske su Unsplash

For the IPCC, the remaining global carbon budget was 360 GtCO2 in 2021

At the COP28 in Dubai, 50 global fossil companies said they were at the forefront of the commitment to comply with the limit of 1.5 ºC set by the Paris Agreement. But the protagonists of this Oil & Gas Decarbonization Charter, who have promised to accelerate climate action, at the same time have expansion plans that will burn 62% of the global carbon budget that we have left before we overtake Paris. All this, formally respecting the commitments made in Dubai.

Because the Decarbonisation Charter does not cover the end uses of oil and gas extracted and marketed by fossil companies. That’s about 90% of their real carbon footprint. Result? The climate conference has made more presentable companies that, overall, by 2050 will emit – only as scope 3 emissions – more than 150 billion tons of CO2 (GtCO2).

Who eats 2/3 of the global carbon budget?

Figures on emissions from companies’ business plans, analyzed by Global Witness in a recently published report. In all, the new extractions from here to mid-century are equivalent to 265 billion barrels of oil and 26.7 billion cubic meters of gas, the NGO calculates: “The total emissions of these products will release 156 billion tons of carbon dioxide equivalent. This is about 62% of the remaining carbon that humanity can produce before we run out of our global carbon budget to limit warming to 1.5 ºC“.

And the two biggest sponsors of the Dubai initiative, namely Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, are also the countries that control the fossil companies that will generate more greenhouse gases. Saudi Aramco and Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC), together, will produce 136.4 billion barrels of oil and 5.5 billion cubic meters of gas. “These two companies are expected to produce products alone that emit 64.7 billion tons of CO2,” Global Witness calculates, which is more than a quarter of the remaining global carbon budget for 1.5°C.

According to the latest IPCC report of 2021, the global carbon budget remaining before exceeding 1.5 degrees is 360 GtCO2: enough to still have a 66% chance of staying below the Paris threshold. For the IPCC, the horizon within which the budget will run out is 2030. To have a higher probability, of 83%, the budget narrows to 300 GtCO2, which at the current rate of emissions would run out in 2028. Other subsequent studies recalculated the budget and set it at 250 GtCO2 to have a probability of just 50%.

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