The US plans fossil fuel side event at UN climate talks

The US plans fossil fuel side event at UN climate talks

The Trump administration has announced plans to hold a side event at next month’s UN climate talks to promote the use of fossil fuels, according to sources.

During last year’s discussions in Bonn, Germany, the US administration a held similar event used to highlight the benefit of technologies that allow the more efficient use of fossil fuels.

This year’s talks will be held at the coal mining region Katowice, Poland, and are set to reinforce global targets on ending the use of fossil fuels, such as the 2015 Paris agreement.

As well as promoting energy sources that could detract focus at COP24, the Trump administration is also continuing negotiations over the Paris agreement, which could see Trump drop his opposition to the deal.

“The White House seems to have taken the view that it’s important to let technocrats complete the work of the rule book. It’s in the U.S. national interest to be at the table and see an outcome that emphasizes transparency, holds countries accountable,” said one of the sources familiar with State Department plans.

The US is the world’s top oil and gas producer and last year became the only country to formally withdraw from the Paris agreement.

“Quite frankly, the U.S. is the only party to the convention that appears to be willing to push a rational discussion on the role of cleaner, more efficient fossil (fuels) and the role of civilian nuclear energy,” said one of the sources involved in planning the event for Katowice, expected to be held on 10th December.

According to the source, the event will discuss the use of coal, natural gas and advanced nuclear and will feature a representative from the Department of Energy (DOE).

The side event will be hosted by Trump’s international energy and climate advisor Wells Griffith, who helped establish a deal that saw the US supply Ukraine with coal last year.

Earlier this year, the US called for a global alliance of countries to encourage the use of fossil fuels in a clean and efficient way that would help developing nations “create their own energy renaissance”, allowing them to achieve economic security and economic growth.

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