The fossil fuel lobby has more delegates in Glasgow than any country

  • More than half a thousand delegates have ties to oil, gas or coal, according to Global Witness

  • Industry lobbyists are integrated into national delegations or observer groups

During the Katowice International Climate Summit (COP24), an executive from the petrolera Royal Dutch Shell revealed without any blush that his company had contributed to the drafting of the Paris Climate Agreement. Specifically his article 6, one of the most controversial, which regulates emission markets and it allows polluting industries to buy emission reduction credits from third parties so that they do not have to reduce them directly. “We elaborated a proposal and many elements of that proposal are reflected in the Paris Agreement & rdquor ;, he said then David Hone, Climate Change Advisor to Shell, the ninth largest company greenhouse gases generates of the world.

Five years after the Paris agreement came into force, Hone once again sits among the delegates at a climate summit. In this case, the Glasgow COP26 (COP26), which has just entered its second week of negotiations. He is part of the hundred delegates of the International Association for the Sale of Emissions (IETA, of its acronym in English), an association of fossil fuel producers that promotes “market solutions for the climate”. Your representatives are not alone. According to an analysis of the platform Global Witness, a total of 503 fossil fuel lobbyists have been accepted as delegates at the Scottish summit sponsored by the United Nations.

“Doors have been opened for them to continue delaying, distracting and diverting attention from the actions we need to take to address the climate crisis,” says Global Witness. Put in perspective, the industry lobi have more delegates in Glasgow than any country participants. More even than Brazil (479) and Turkey (376), the nations with the most representatives at the top. They also exceed the sum of delegates from the eight countries most affected by the climate emergency, a group that includes Mozambique, Bahamas O Haiti, or to the official UN delegation representing the Indigenous villages.

Links with more than a hundred companies

Many of these lobbyists make no secret of their affiliation. They represent more than one one hundred oil, gas or coal companies, according to the report. And well they are integrated into national delegations or in any of the business groups that participate in the event as observers. In the Russian representationFor example, one in eight of its more than 300 delegates has ties to industry, according to Global Witness. In total there are 27 countries that include hydrocarbon lobbyists.

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According to the Framework Convention on Climate Change of the UN, only state delegates can negotiate the drafting of climate agreements, while the rest of the participants, from NGOs to employers, exercise observers. But as David Hone recognized three years ago, the hallway game can go a long way. “Was chatting with some delegations& rdquor ;, he said then, “the European position is not very different from Shell & rdquor ;.

That Trojan horse now also threatens to spoil the results of the summit due to the lack of scrutiny of the conflicts of interest dragged by hundreds of their delegates. “Fossil fuel lobbyists should not have a seat in the climate negotiations,” says Global Witness. “Just as tobacco lobbyists were excluded from public health conversations, we have to get these polluters out of climate policy.”

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