The climate crisis has not stopped the search for oil


It bears repeating this summer as the effects of the climate crisis seem to be intensifying, with wildfires in California, drought in the American West and an intense heat wave in Europe.
In search of more oil in Africa. Rather than reducing oil production, the world seems to be moving in the opposite direction. As The New York Times reported on Sunday, the Democratic Republic of Congo, home to rainforests and peatlands that help control climate change, is now trying to portray itself as a new destination for oil investments by auctioning land for drilling.
The report follows CNN’s in-depth review last year of Canadian firm ReconAfrica’s efforts to develop what is believed to be a massive oilfield with potentially 12 billion barrels of oil in Namibia.

CNN’s David McKenzie and Ingrid Formanek pointed out the painful irony: Namibia, which currently does not have a significant oil and gas industry like some neighboring countries, is feeling the adverse effects of climate change. It is warming faster than other parts of the planet, jeopardizing its agricultural industry.

A fairer sharing. Namibia, Botswana and Congo rightly want to derive from their land the same benefits that Western countries have used to become rich.

“Someone who is sitting in Norway and has a very good quality of life thanks to the oil discovered in the North Sea is now telling the world that it should run on renewable energy,” said Niall Kramer, consultant south- African oil industry and former oil executive, said in CNN’s report last year. “If you’re sitting in Africa, your incentives are very different.”

The Times identifies a similar sentiment in the Congo: The auction shines a light on a double standard that many political leaders across the African continent have denounced: how can Western countries, which have built their prosperity on fossil fuels that emit toxic fumes that warm the planet, demand that Africa give up its reserves of coal, oil and gas to protect everyone?

Senior Congolese climate official Tosi Mpanu Mpanu told The Times that the country is focused on lifting Congolese people out of poverty.

“Our priority is not to save the planet,” he said. He wants Congo to be compensated, either by more developed countries for protecting its rainforests and peatlands, or by oil companies.

Always addicted. That the world’s dependence on oil is far from over is frustrating.

Oil demand is continues to risenot diminish as countries emerge from the Covid-19 pandemic.
Cuts in Russia’s oil and gas supplies to Europe – likely as a form of retaliation for sanctions imposed on Russia over its invasion of Ukraine – could realistically plunge Germany into its own recession.

As for Biden, his political future is still very much tied to people’s perception of the economy, which in turn is partially bound to gas prices.

Lower gasoline prices were hailed as good news. The fact that gasoline prices, while still high, have come down is a fact the White House has clung to as it argues that the economy is better than people think.

“In fact, the typical driver will now be spending about $35 less per month due to the recent drop in gas prices,” Heather Boushey, a member of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, told Victor on Monday. CNN’s Blackwell.

RELATED: Biden plays down worries about economic downturn
The administration has pushed US oil companies and foreign countries to increase production, and it is fighting environmental groups to lease new land for oil and gas development in the Gulf of Mexico and Wyoming.

The bad news about Biden’s climate agenda. He’s stuck in Congress, where West Virginia Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin argues that Americans can’t afford more spending — at least not right now — to lead the country out of a cash-based economy. oil. Manchin ignores the cost of doing nothing.

Meanwhile, people don’t think the economy is doing very well: 64% of Americans think the economy is currently in a recession, according to a recent CNN poll.

As White House officials and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen will tell you, that perception is mistaken. Recessions are officially declared by an eight-member committee of the National Bureau of Economic Research, which is not a government agency.

And even if gross domestic product data due this week shows a second consecutive quarter of negative growth, the NBER committee may not immediately declare a recession. Read our previous look at how the committee calls recessions.

Current US officials and their counterparts around the world agree that the climate crisis is underway. They also seem to be united in recognizing the political reality that voters like cheaper energy.

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