The UAE’s president Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan said on Monday at COP27 that the country will remain a “responsible supplier” of oil and gas for “as long as the world needs”.

At the COP27 climate summit in Egypt, al-Nahyan emphasised the international community’s importance in finding effective climate action solutions. He told the assembled audience of delegates that the summit was vital for the planet’s future and generations.

He continued by saying that the UAE, which is one of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries’ (OPEC’s) top producers, made investments in renewable energy to focus on lowering the carbon footprint of its fossil fuel output. He went on to highlight an agreement of $100bn investment in energy transition projects with the US on 1 November. 

According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, a branch of the US National Institutes of Health,  the OPEC countries contributed 7% of global CO₂ emissions in 2010. This is considered crucial for future energy use and the potential for OPEC countries to release greenhouse gases.

The UAE president said: “Oil and gas in the UAE is among the least carbon-intensive around the world. We will continue to focus on lowering carbon emissions from this sector. The UAE is a responsible energy supplier, and we will continue to play that role as we transition to alternate resources and technologies.” 

According to Argus Media, the UAE, one of OPEC’s largest share reserves holders, wants to increase its crude production capacity from 3.5 million barrels per day (bpd) to 5 million bpd by 2030. A source says that the country has accelerated those plans, with estimates showing that UAE production increased to 3.19 million bpd in September. 

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The UAE will host the COP28 UN climate summit next year. The country was the first in the Middle-East to pledge for net-zero carbon by 2050.