Dr Sultan Al Jaber Oil man

Denmark Govt Should Cancel Climate Ministerial Meeting Co-Chaired by Oil Boss Sultan Al Jaber

To the Honourable Dan Jorgensen, Danish Minister for Development Cooperation and Global Climate Policy,

We have learned that Denmark will be hosting a high-level meeting of climate ministers in Copenhagen on March 20-21, with a focus on implementing the results of COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh and planning for COP28 in the United Arab Emirates in December. We appreciate your commitment to climate protection and your intentions to hold these talks. However, we must respectfully express our concerns about holding the Copenhagen Climate Ministerial, given the controversy surrounding the co-chairing parties.

We would like to bring the following points to your attention:

1- The appointment of the COP28 president-elect, Sultan Al Jaber, has been met with criticism from climate protection NGOs due to his ties to the petroleum industry. The contradiction of his role as an oil boss and the president-elect of COP28 has raised concerns, and hundreds of climate protection NGOs have written an open letter to the UN Secretary and Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC protesting this appointment and demanding his resignation.

2- COP27 was highly lobbied by fossil fuel lobbyists, with 636 of them granted access to the conference. Among these were 50 UAE oil lobbyists who attended the COP27, representing various companies including ADNOC, TAQA, OXY, TADWEER, and Bahrain Petroleum Company. This extensive lobbying has raised concerns about the influence of the fossil fuel industry on climate policy.

3- We are highly suspicious that COP28 will also be influenced by oil lobbyists due to the appointment of an oil boss to lead the climate talks. The UAE is attempting to capture the European consumer-driven oil market, and some MEPs have already expressed support for increased oil and gas purchases from the UAE. This suggests that UAE oil lobbying is well-organised and may influence European Parliament decisions.

4- During CERAweek, Al-Jaber called for a 7% annual reduction in emissions, which demands less fossil-fuel-friendly policies and more investment in renewable energy. However, ADNOC announced three months ago that it plans to invest $150 billion to expand its oil and gas production capacity, with the aim of raising crude output capacity to 5 million barrels per day by 2027. This raises serious doubts about how emissions can be reduced when UAE’s biggest oil company is expanding its production capacity, which is a gross contradiction of what Sultan Al Jaber says and what UAE actually does.

5- Allowing Sultan Al Jaber to co-chair the meeting would detract from the true essence of climate talks. Given his professional background, he is more involved in the petroleum business than protecting the climate. Therefore, allowing him to preside over the Copenhagen Climate Ministerial would be an affront to all those climate activists, environmentalists, scientists, and politicians who have spent their lives advocating for climate change action, reducing reliance on fossil fuels, and investing in green energy. Nevertheless, ADNOC, under Sultan Al Jaber’s leadership, aims to expand its oil production capacity.

We appreciate Denmark’s initiative to push for climate action. However, holding the Copenhagen Climate Ministerial with such controversial co-chairing parties raises concerns about the influence of the fossil fuel industry on climate policy. Therefore, we respectfully urge you to reconsider hosting the event and find alternative ways to push for climate action.

Thank you for your attention to this matter.


Concerned Global Citizens