OPEC has reaffirmed its commitment to help tackling global climate change with a deal for enhanced cooperation with the United Nations (UN).
OPEC secretary general Mohammad Barkindo said the topical issue has the potential to “impact energy demand, overall energy mix and the future economy of oil”.
But he said that OPEC nations were 100 per cent behind the UN’s Paris Agreement to reduce carbon emissions.
Barkindo said: “Let me stress that OPEC not only welcomed the Paris Agreement on climate change from COP 21 and its early enforcement toward the end of 2016.
“Our member countries played an important role in reaching the Agreement – and they will also play a role in its implementation.
“All 13 OPEC member countries have signed the Agreement and all are in the process of ratifying it.
“I should also highlight here that I visited Bonn in October 2016 to meet with Patricia Espinosa, executive secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), to enhance cooperation between the UNFCCC and OPEC.
“This collaboration is a new and positive development that was welcomed by the UNFCCC.”
And the OPEC leader said that the cartel countries would play their own part in a shift towards a lower carbon future.
He added: “In terms of the energy mix, we can expect to see a further shift towards renewables in the coming decades.
“Let me stress that OPEC is greatly supportive of the development of renewables.
“Many of our countries have vast sources of solar and wind, and significant investments are being made in these fields.
“Of course, we also acknowledge the challenges of emissions that come from burning fossil fuels.
“In this regard, we recognize the need to use energy efficiently and to continually look to develop and adopt cleaner energy technologies, such as carbon capture and storage and many others in the future.
“I am a believer that solutions can be found in technologies that reduce and ultimately eliminate these emissions. In this regard, I welcome coordinated action with the industry and through various research and development platforms.”