The Climate Summit COP 28 promises to be transformational: Expect big actions and investments as the global climate cost skyrockets
Before I left the World Bank in 2015, the Washington based organization organized an event called “Should the World Bank President be a Private Sector CEO?” While this panel generated a lot of animosity and anger, in May 2023, the World Bank chose a Wall Street CEO, Mr. Banga as the new President. It is becoming clearer that poverty reduction, and sustainable development need more private sector and capital markets expertise and tools. And the market is adjusting to this new reality. Similarly, global decarbonization and climate change adaptation, needs to be tackled from the source up with greater private sector leadership. The great work that International Financial Institutions have done together with civil society groups, needs support from oil and gas producers as they have the financial resources and now the market incentives to become part of the solution.
The UAE and its Confidence Game:
The UAE, 7th largest oil producer in the world is hosting Cop28 this year. COP 28 President, Sultan Dr. Al-Jaber is one of the most powerful men in the world, being also the CEO of the UAE National Oil Company ADNOC. Dr. Al Jaber wears also other hats, as he is the UAE’s minister of industry and advanced technology, as well the chairman of Masdar, a renewable energy firm now active in over 40 countries. Masdar, was launched in 2006 and has invested in mainly solar and wind power projects with a total capacity of 15 gigawatts, capable of displacing more than 19 million ton of carbon dioxide emissions annually. As he addressed the Abu Dhabi International Petroleum Exhibition and Conference at the end of 2022, Dr. Jaber made it clear that “The world needs maximum energy… and minimum carbon emissions,” he also stated that “the world needs all the solutions it can get. It is oil and gas and solar, and wind and nuclear, and hydrogen plus the clean energies yet to be discovered, commercialized and deployed.” As he tours the world consulting with government, global foundations and civil society groups, Dr. Sultan Al-Jaber, has repeatedly asked to be given a chance to lead the energy sector in the decarbonization efforts. He has argued that as it is the fossil fuel industry that must change most to…