Uproar as UAE names oil chief to head COP28
The head of the United Arab Emirates' national oil company was named yesterday as president of this year's COP28 climate talks, prompting fierce criticism from environmental activists.
Sultan al-Jaber, chief executive of the UAE's Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC), will be the first CEO to take the role at the UN summit, said a statement carried by the official WAM news agency.
Jaber, the UAE's minister of industry, is also the Gulf state's special envoy for climate change and has taken part in more than 10 COP meetings.
But climate activists were quick to criticise his appointment. Harjeet Singh, head of global political strategy at Climate Action Network International, said it "poses an outrageous conflict of interest".
Teresa Anderson, global lead on climate justice at ActionAid said: "This appointment goes beyond putting the fox in charge of the henhouse."
The UAE, one of the world's biggest crude producers, will host the next edition in Dubai in November and December. It had the largest contingent of oil and gas lobbyists at last year's talks. The Gulf monarchy argues that oil remains indispensable to the global economy and is pushing the merits of carbon capture -- removing carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse gas, as fuel is burned or from the air.