At the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26), 11 national and subnational governments led by Costa Rica and Denmark announced the launch of the Beyond Oil & Gas Alliance (BOGA), which will seek to deliver a managed and just transition away from oil and gas production.
BOGA is a first-of-its-kind alliance of governments determined to set an end date for their oil and gas exploration and extraction and curtail new licensing or undertake other significant measures that contribute to the joint goal of aligning oil and gas production with the objectives of the Paris Agreement.
Members announced at Thursday’s event included, in alphabetical order, Costa Rica, Denmark, France, Greenland, Ireland, Quebec, Sweden, and Wales as core members; and California, New Zealand, and Portugal as associate members.
Co-chaired by Costa Rica and Denmark, BOGA will leverage momentum from first-movers and create an international community of practice that can support governments in delivering their commitment to a managed phase-out of oil and gas production.
“The Beyond Oil and Gas Alliance raises the bar from climate action. If we want to address the climate crisis, we need a managed but decisive phase out of oil and gas production. I am delighted that new members are joining forces with Costa Rica and Denmark to set a date for the end of fossil fuel production. We invite other national and subnational governments to join BOGA and align their oil and gas production with the goals of the Paris Agreement,” said Andrea Meza, Minister of Environment and Energy of Costa Rica.
“Science has made it clear - the fossil era needs to come to an end. This is why Denmark has set an end date for oil and gas production. And why we are building this alliance of countries willing to step up to the plate. BOGA will help to spur momentum for countries to phase out their production of oil and gas while creating a clean energy economy,” says Danish Climate Minister Dan Jørgensen.
The founding members all signed up to the BOGA Declaration pledging to support a socially just and equitable global transition to align oil and gas production with the objectives of the Paris Agreement. This will be followed up by concrete action, with core members committing to end new concessions, licensing or leasing rounds and to set a Paris-aligned date for ending oil and gas production.
Quotes from new core members:
“Respecting the Paris Agreement means moving away from two centuries of fossil fuel civilisation in a few decades. What we need to achieve is a complete transformation of our economies and societies. In France, two-thirds of the energy consumed is still of fossil origin: we are taking action to get out of this dependence by closing our last coal-fired power plants, by converting our car industry to electrification, massively renovating our housing and developing renewable energies. France became in 2017 the first country in the world to prohibit exploration and exploitation of hydrocarbons on its territory. We want to show the same determination on a global scale. That is why we are joining the Beyond Oil & Gas Alliance: to take action in a collective and coordinated way to achieve a just transition,” said Barbara Pompili, Minister for the ecological transition of France.
“Climate changes are happening in our back yard and the changes are tangible. For Greenland, the BOGA initiative is a strong signal about prioritizing renewable energy instead of continuing with energy sources we know is creating the problem,” said Kalistat Lund, Minister for Agriculture, Self-Sufficiency, Energy, and Environment of the Government of Greenland.
“The decision we have made today to join the Beyond Oil and Gas Alliance sends a powerful message that we are moving away from fossil fuels towards a renewable future both in Ireland and internationally. Through the Climate Act 2021, Ireland has closed the door on new exploration activities for oil and gas- there is no longer a legal basis for granting new licenses. In line with Irish Government policy of keeping fossil fuels in the ground, we are also currently legislating to prohibit exploration for and extraction of coal, lignite and oil shale. By doing this, we are incentivising the transition to renewable energy and putting ourselves on a pathway to net-zero by 2050. As a core member of BOGA Ireland will lead by example and share our experience of legislation so that we can all move towards a fossil-free future," said Eamon Ryan, Irish Minister for Environment Climate and Communications.
“Quebec intends to fight against climate change by exploiting, in particular, its abundant hydroelectric resources. But to achieve our target of reducing GHG emissions by 37.5% in 2030 compared to 1990 and achieve carbon neutrality in 2050, we must also free ourselves from fossil fuels. By joining the Beyond Oil and Gas Coalition, Quebec is setting an example and assuming its leadership role in green energy production. We must also urge other states to find alternatives to oil and gas,” said François Legault, Premier of Québec.
“The use of fossil fuels must be a parenthesis in history. This is a clear step forward, showing that renewable is the future. We can’t continue to extract oil and gas during a rampant climate crisis, and therefore I am proud that Sweden today joins BOGA,” said Per Bolund, Minister of the Environment and Climate of Sweden.
“Decision-making powers over licensing for oil and gas exploration and extraction in Wales were devolved from the UK Government to the Welsh Government in 2018 and, since then, no new licenses have been granted and a number of extant licenses have been surrendered or terminated. We are extremely pleased to join this new alliance today, which shows how Wales is at the forefront of meeting the global challenges of climate change and will soon be sharing lessons and experiences with other nations. In our recently published Net Zero Wales Plan, we have committed to using all of our powers to phase out fossil fuels, through our planning frameworks, licensing powers and our policy frameworks which set out a strong presumption against new fossil-fuelled power plants. Our vision is for a decarbonised energy system which provides wider economic and social benefits for Wales than the system we see today and we believe that replacing fossil fuels with low carbon sources will help Wales create the industries and jobs of the future," said the Welsh Government’s Deputy Minister for Climate Change, Lee Waters.
Quotes from new associate members:
“California is a global leader in combating the climate crisis with bold action to protect our planet while growing the economy, but we can’t meet the challenge of this existential threat alone,” said California Governor Gavin Newsom. “With fossil fuels powering much of the global energy system, it’s critical that we partner with other states and nations around the world to build momentum for the phase-out of oil and gas production. Together, we must move beyond oil and usher in a cleaner and greener future that safeguards our communities, environment and the economy,” said California’s Governor Gavin Newsom.
“To stay within the Paris Agreement’s temperature goals and build a more resilient and thriving future, we need to cut global emissions by approximately 45 percent below 2010 levels by 2030. If we are to achieve this, then we simply have to leave most of the carbon we know about underground; it cannot be burned. In joining the Beyond Oil and Gas Alliance, New Zealand is reaffirming its commitment to a world where fossil fuels are a thing of the past. A world where the energy we use comes from clean, renewable sources, rather than from burning dirty fossil fuels. New Zealand has already taken steps towards this future. For example, we recently brought an end to all new offshore oil and gas exploration. Our independent Climate Change Commission has also recently recommended that the Government develop a plan to phase out fossil gas in the energy system, as well as set a date to end the expansion of fossil gas connections in buildings. Our Government is currently looking into these proposals and will include more in our Emissions Reduction Plan next year,” said James Shaw, New Zealand’s Minister of Climate Change.
The alliance has also strong support from Bloomberg Philanthropies, who is a partner of the alliance:
“To win the battle against climate change, we need to accelerate the global transition away from fossil fuels. To help do that, Bloomberg Philanthropies is now dramatically expanding our efforts to end coal-fired power, and we’re glad to support the launch of the Beyond Oil and Gas Alliance. Denmark and Costa Rica are leading the way toward phasing out oil and gas production, and the Alliance will rally other governments to follow their lead – improving health, strengthening economies, and striking an important blow against climate change,” said Michael R. Bloomberg, UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Climate Ambition and Solutions and founder of Bloomberg L.P. and Bloomberg Philanthropies.
The Beyond Oil and Gas Alliance (BOGA) is an international coalition of governments and stakeholders working together to facilitate the managed phase-out of oil and gas production. Led by the governments of Denmark and Costa Rica, the coalition aims to elevate the issue of oil and gas production phase-out in international climate dialogues, mobilize action and commitments, and create an international community of practice on this issue.
Find more information about BOGA at beyondoilandgasalliance.com, or on Twitter, @BeyondOilGas.
- BOGA employs a tiered membership structure with gradually raising levels of ambition.
- Core members of BOGA commit to end new concessions, licensing or leasing rounds for oil and gas production and exploration and to set a Paris-aligned date for ending oil and gas production and exploration on the territory over which they have jurisdiction.
- Associate members of BOGA will have taken significant concrete steps that contribute to the reduction of oil and gas production, for example, subsidy reform or an end to international public financial support for oil and gas exploration and production abroad.
- Both governments and other partners can become Friends of BOGA by signing up to the BOGA Declaration, which supports a socially just and equitable global transition to align oil and gas production with the objectives of the Paris Agreement, and commits the signatures to work together to facilitate effective measures to this end in line with the Paris Agreement and national climate neutrality targets.
- Oil and gas production is defined as the upstream exploration, development and production of oil and gas up to, but not including, midstream and downstream activities.
Costa Rica: Diego Arguedas Ortiz, email@example.com, +506 8449 8301
Denmark: Emil Lee Madsen, firstname.lastname@example.org, +45 41 72 90 58