COP27: UK & Scottish Governments must ‘set an end date’ for fossil fuels to meet climate goals
- UN warns world on track for catastrophic 2.8C of heating
- Call for Scotland to finally join global Beyond Oil & Gas Alliance
- UK Gov’t urged to ‘Free Alaa’ from Egyptian prison
- Scottish Climate March planned for Edinburgh
Ahead of the UN climate talks COP27 in Egypt, campaigners have issued a warning to the UK and Scottish Governments that they must ‘set an end date’ for oil and gas if the world is to stay within agreed climate limits.
The UN recently warned that the world was on course for a catastrophic 2.8C of climate warming by the end of this century, saying that emissions must fall significantly by 2030 if we are to stay within agreed climate limits. However the UK Government is opening new oil and gas fields, encouraging companies to explore for more fossil fuels and briefly tried to bring back fracking.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, who will join the talks in Egypt, said at COP26 that Scotland would work towards becoming part of the Beyond Oil and Gas Alliance – a group of nations who have committed to a managed phase out of oil and gas in line with the goals of the Paris Agreement.
One year on this commitment has not been made. The forthcoming Scottish Energy Strategy must establish a phase out of oil and gas for any chance of meeting our climate targets.
Demonstrations are all but banned in Egypt, which has a dire track record on human rights. Consequently there will not be any mass protests during the talks but instead Egyptian activists along with allies across African countries and the Arab world, have called for a global mobilisation to draw attention to demands for climate justice and human rights.
Edinburgh will host a Climate Justice March on Saturday 12 November as part of this Global Day of Action during COP27.
Friends of the Earth Scotland’s head of campaigns Mary Church said:
“In the 12 months since COP26 ended we’ve seen yet again the devastating impacts of global heating at only 1.1C of warming – 30 million people flooded in Pakistan, famine across east Africa, wildfire and drought in the UK during the summer heatwave, and thousands of premature deaths from that same heatwave.
“Politicians did a lot of backslapping at COP26 with the UK presidency claiming to have kept the goal of 1.5C alive but these are empty words without the action to deliver on them. Over the last year the UK Government has actively made the climate crisis worse as it opened up new oil fields, tried to bring back fracking and is still considering opening a new coal mine.
“The UK and the Scottish Governments need to set an end date for fossil fuels well within the decade and redouble efforts for a fair transition away to a renewable powered economy, with affordable heat and transport for all.
“For COP27 to have any chance of success the talks need to see rich historical polluters like the UK come to the table willing to deliver their fair share of climate action, which means deep and rapid cuts to climate emissions in line with our responsibility for causing the crisis. A fair outcome would also include paying our climate debt to those nations who have done the least to cause the crisis and yet find themselves on the sharpest ends of its extreme impacts.
“Yet none of the big historical polluters including the UK is committing to anything near what is needed or owed. Instead, governments and corporations are greenwashing business as usual and relying on fantasy techno-fixes like carbon capture and storage and hydrogen to save the day.”
Human Rights in Egypt
Commenting on the human rights situation in Egypt, and the ongoing hunger strike of British-Egyptian blogger and activist Alaa Abd El Fattah, one of Egypt’s highest profile prisoners of conscience who has been in prison for most of the last 8 years, Church continued:
“The human rights situation in Egypt is atrocious, and we stand in solidarity with Egyptians and call for the release of all political prisoners and the opening up of civic space. There can be no climate justice without human rights and without public participation in shaping the transition to a world freed from fossil fuels.
“The UK Government must not return from Egypt without British citizen and human rights defender Abdel Abd El Fattah who is currently on hunger strike in an Egyptian jail for the so-called crime of sharing a Facebook post.”
FoES Head of Campaigns Mary Church will be attending the second week of COP27.
NOTES TO EDITORS
COP27 will take place in Sharm el-Sheikh in Egypt from 6-18th November 2022.
For more information about human rights in Egypt and the campaign to open up civic space visit
For more information about human rights defender and British citizen Alaa Abd El Fattah visit
UN Emissions Gap Report 2022: The Closing Window
Marchers will assemble at St Andrew Square in Edinburgh at 12 noon on Saturday 12 November. Sign up for information about the march:
During the five heat-periods between June and August 2022, 56,303 deaths occurred in England and Wales; this is 3,271 deaths (6.2%) above the five-year average.
Friends of the Earth Scotland is:
* Scotland’s leading environmental campaigning organisation
* An independent Scottish charity with a network of thousands of supporters and active local groups across Scotland
* Part of the largest grassroots environmental network in the world, uniting over 2 million supporters, 73 national member groups, and 5,000 local activist groups.