Related video: Greta Thunberg criticises world leaders at Davos for 'fuelling destruction of the planet'
Not long after Qatar came under fire for its hosting of the World Cup despite its worrying human rights record, another Middle Eastern country is controversially hosting an event which some might say they aren’t particularly suitable for – and climate activist Greta Thunberg isn’t happy.
The United Nations’ climate change conference, more commonly known as Cop, will have its 28th event at the end of the year, but the United Arab Emirates have decided the boss of Abu Dhabi’s national oil company Adnoc should be the conference’s president.
So you can imagine why Thunberg is far from pleased with that, and told an audience during a panel at the World Economic Forum of big businesses in Davos: “Lobbyists have been influencing these conferences since forever, and this just puts a very clear face to it.
“It’s completely ridiculous.”
According to the company’s environmental, social and governance report for 2021, Adnoc’s absolute direct and indirect greenhouse gas emissions increased by more than 5 per cent and 18 per cent respectively, in comparison to emissions the year before.
It also claims, however, that its total emissions have decreased by 26 per cent between 2018 and 2021, which is says has been “driven by energy efficiency initiatives” and a “higher contribution from renewable energy sources”.
To put that into perspective, that’s more than BP’s estimate that year of 30.20kt of methane, and a fair bit below Shell’s estimate of 46.01kt.
Sure sounds like a lot.
In a statement to CNBC, a Cop28 spokesperson said Adnoc’s chief executive, Sultan al-Jaber, is “uniquely qualified” to deliver a successful conference.
“[He] is an energy expert and founder of one of the world’s leading renewable energy companies, a senior business leader, government minister and climate diplomat with more than 20 years of experience of taking climate action,” they said.