The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has released a statement saying that fossil fuels continue to make up 80% of the global energy mix.
In its September 14 statement, OPEC called out the assertion by the International Energy Agency (IEA) that fossil fuel demand would peak before 2030, stating that the assertion was not made on data-based forecasts.
OPEC noted that it is an extremely risky and impractical narrative to dismiss fossil fuels or to suggest that they are at the beginning of their end.
- “In past decades, there were often calls of peak supply, and in more recent ones, peak demand, but evidently neither has materialized. The difference today, and what makes such predictions so dangerous, is that they are often accompanied by calls to stop investing in new oil and gas projects.
- “This thinking on fossil fuels is ideologically driven, rather than fact-based. It also does not take into account the technological progress the industry continues to make on solutions to help reduce emissions. Neither does it acknowledge that fossil fuels continue to make up over 80% of the global energy mix, the same as 30 years ago, or that the energy security they provide is vital.”
The OPEC statement also referenced its Secretary General, Haitham al Ghais who has said that such narratives only set the global energy system up to fail spectacularly, leading to energy chaos on a potentially unprecedented scale, with dire consequences for economies and billions of people across the world.
OPEC member countries are investing in clean energy
The OPEC statement noted further that several member countries are investing heavily in clean energy projects. It wrote:
- “Technological innovation is a key focus for OPEC, which is why Member Countries are investing heavily in hydrogen projects, carbon capture utilization and storage facilities, the circular carbon economy, and in renewables too.
- “While some may suggest that a number of these oil-focused technologies are still immature, they ignore the fact that many technologies referenced in net-zero scenarios are at an immature, experimental or even theoretical stage.”
Facing energy poverty, many countries have had a wake-up call
According to OPEC, energy issues have climbed back to the top of the agenda in recent years for populations as many have seen how experimental net zero policies and targets impact their lives. These countries have legitimate concerns:
- How much will they cost in their current form?
- What benefits will they bring?
- Will they work as hyped?
- Are there other options to help reduce emissions?
- What will happen if these forecasts, policies and targets do not materialize?
- “Thankfully, there has been a reawakening across many societies of the need for energy security and economic development to go together with reducing emissions. In turn, this has led to a reevaluation by some policymakers on their approach to energy transition pathways.
- “Cognizant of the challenge facing the world to eliminate energy poverty, meet rising energy demand, and ensure affordable energy while reducing emissions, OPEC does not dismiss any energy sources or technologies, and believes that all stakeholders should do the same and recognize short- and long-term energy realities,”
- “In the interests of contributing to future overall global energy stability, OPEC will continue to cooperate with all relevant stakeholders to foster dialogue, that includes the views of all peoples, to ensure inclusive and effective energy transitions moving forward,” says HE Al Ghais.