G20 draft tweaked to reflect dissent on cutting ‘unabated’ fossil fuels


Major fossil fuel producers Saudi Arabia and Russia have opposed a proposal to triple G20 countries' renewable energy capacity

: A draft statement by Group of 20 energy officials was edited on Saturday to reflect concerns from some members on phasing down “unabated” fossil fuels, according to documents reviewed by Reuters and two people familiar with the matter.

Major fossil fuel producers Saudi Arabia and Russia have opposed a proposal to triple G20 countries’ renewable energy capacity in long debates at a ministers’ meeting in India working on a statement for the G20 summit in the capital New Delhi in September.

A draft late on Friday read: “The importance of making efforts towards phase down of unabated fossil fuels, in line with different national circumstances was emphasized.”

On Saturday, the draft added: “Others had different views on the matter that abatement and removal technologies will address such concerns.”

The phrase “abatement and removal technologies” refers to carbon capture and removal technologies, one source said.

It was not immediately clear who expressed concerns about the earlier language. The India delegation did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

G20 chair statements are typically edited multiple times before a final version is presented at the end of a conference.

The draft for the meeting in the western state of Goa was still being edited, a third source said, declining to elaborate. The meeting’s chair, Indian Electricity Minister R.K. Singh, is expected to brief the media about the G20 conference late on Saturday.

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