New Norwegian government unimpressed by EU commitment to Arctic drilling – EURACTIV.com
The country’s new center-left government has said it will seek to develop the country’s lucrative oil and gas industry while working to reduce carbon emissions. The comments came just a day after the EU pledged to pursue a ban on mining new fossil fuel deposits in a new regional strategy.
According to the strategy, the EU will seek to ban the exploitation of new oil, coal and gas fields in the Arctic to protect a region severely affected by climate change. A ban would also prevent possible strain on resources, the EU believes.
The future of the Norwegian oil and gas industry had been one of the main issues in the bitter election campaign and coalition talks.
When unveiling its future energy policy, the Norwegian Labor Party-led coalition pledged to reduce its net emissions by 55% by 2030. It announced that the country’s transition to green energy would be gradual.
âThe oil and gas sector will be developed, not dismantled,â the coalition said in a policy document released earlier Wednesday.
Norwegian officials told EURACTIV that this would not be a contradiction, as much of Norwegian oil and gas is used outside Norway, which means the emissions they cause are not factored into. totals for Norway.
Norway is the largest producer of oil and gas in Western Europe. Meanwhile, the EU is a net importer of Arctic oil and gas and estimates that it is responsible for 36% of the Arctic’s black carbon deposits.
(Alexandra Brzozowski, EURACTIV.com)