John Kerry tells AP he backs UAE oil chief overseeing COP28 | Jobi Cool


ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates — U.S. local weather envoy John Kerry is backing the United Arab Emirates’ choice to call the CEO of a state-run oil firm to preside over the upcoming United Nations local weather talks in Dubai, citing his work on renewable power initiatives.

In an interview Sunday with The Related Press, the previous US secretary of state acknowledged that the Emirates and different international locations that depend on fossil fuels to fund their coffers face discovering “some stability” forward.

Nonetheless, he rejected the concept that Sultan al-Jaber’s appointment ought to be robotically disqualified as a result of he heads Abu Dhabi Nationwide Oil Co. Nonetheless, activists likened it to asking “arms sellers to guide peace talks” when authorities introduced his nomination on Thursday.

“I believe Dr. Sultan al-Jaber is a superb selection as a result of he’s the pinnacle of the corporate. That firm is aware of it must be restructured,” Kerry mentioned after attending an power convention within the Emirati capital. “He is aware of that — and the management of the UAE is dedicated to alter.”

Nonetheless, Abu Dhabi plans to extend its crude oil manufacturing from 4 million barrels per day to five million, even because the UAE pledges to be carbon impartial by 2050 – a purpose that is still troublesome to evaluate and which the Emirates nonetheless doesn’t have . totally defined the way it will attain.

Kerry pointed to a speech al-Jaber gave Saturday in Abu Dhabi during which he referred to as for the upcoming COP — or Convention of Events — to maneuver “from targets to getting it performed throughout mitigation, adaptation, financing and loss and harm.” Al-Jaber additionally warned that the world “have to be sincere with ourselves about how a lot progress we’ve really made and the way a lot additional and sooner we actually must go.”

“He made it very clear that we’re not transferring quick sufficient. We have to scale back emissions. We have to start to considerably speed up this transition,” Kerry mentioned. “So I’ve plenty of confidence that the proper questions shall be on the desk that they may reply to them and make international locations acknowledge their obligations.”

Annually, the nation internet hosting the UN negotiations appoints an individual to guide the negotiations. Hosts usually select a veteran diplomat, because the conversations will be extremely troublesome to steer between competing nations and their pursuits. The nominee’s place as “COP President” is confirmed by delegates at the beginning of the talks, often with out objection.

Al-Jaber is a trusted confidant of UAE chief Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan. He additionally led a once-ambitious venture to construct a $22 billion “carbon impartial” metropolis on the outskirts of Abu Dhabi – an effort that was later scaled again after the worldwide monetary disaster hit the Emirates onerous in early 2008. Immediately, he additionally serves as chairman of Masdar, a clear power firm that grew out of the venture.

Nonetheless, skepticism stays amongst activists about al-Jaber. A name by international locations together with India and america for a tapering of oil and pure gasoline by no means made it to public dialogue at COP27 within the Egyptian resort city of Sharm el-Sheikh in November.

Activists fear that the COP being held in a Center Japanese nation depending on fossil gasoline gross sales for the second consecutive yr may see one thing related occur within the Emirates.

Requested about that concern, Kerry mentioned: “I do not assume the UAE was concerned in altering that.”

“There shall be a degree of management — and and I believe that shall be very constructive,” the previous U.S. senator and presidential candidate mentioned in 2004. “It is going to assist folks, you already know, keep in line right here.”

“I believe it is a time, a brand new time for accountability,” he added.

Nonetheless, the Emirates and the US preserve shut army ties, no matter which federation makes coverage choices that Washington does not like.

Dubai’s Jebel Ali Port is essentially the most used port of name for the US Navy exterior of America. About 3,500 US troops are stationed within the nation, together with at Abu Dhabi’s Al Dhafra Air Base and a naval outpost in Fujairah. The United Arab Emirates has about $29 billion in pending protection gross sales with the Individuals, together with the acquisition of its most superior air protection system recognized by the acronym THAAD.

For Europeans particularly, Russia’s struggle on Ukraine has taken a toll on the continent’s reliance on Moscow’s pure gasoline to warmth their houses in winter. Though helped by an unusually heat winter, Europeans try to supply gasoline elsewhere, whereas additionally on the lookout for renewables to fill what gaps they will.

“No nation advantages from having a petro-dictator who is ready to management their future and their costs and their financial system with reckless habits,” Kerry mentioned, referring to Russian chief Vladimir Putin.

“To the extent that something comes out of it that can change issues for the higher, it’s Europe’s deep dedication to main reductions in emissions and to a whole shift within the nature of their power provide,” Kerry mentioned.

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