PanamaTimes

Monday, Apr 22, 2024

Colombia announces halt on fossil fuel exploration for a greener economy

Colombia announces halt on fossil fuel exploration for a greener economy

The minister for mines, Irene Vélez, told world leaders the country will shift away from fossil fuels to begin a sustainable chapter
Colombia’s leftwing government has announced that it will not approve any new oil and gas exploration projects as it seeks to shift away from fossil fuels and toward a new sustainable economy.

Irene Vélez, the minister for mines told world leaders at the World Economic Forum in Davos that the time had come for the Andean nation to move away from its reliance on oil and gas and begin a new, greener chapter in the country’s history.

“We have decided not to award new oil and gas exploration contracts, and while that has been very controversial, it’s a clear sign of our commitment in the fight against climate change,” Vélez said during a panel in Davos on Thursday. “This decision is absolutely urgent and needs immediate action.”

Colombia’s president, Gustavo Petro, made ending the country’s long history of economic reliance on oil a key part of his campaign before becoming the country’s first leftist leader in August last year.

But a fractured congress, increasingly bleak economic outlook and a series of policy U-turns from the government have put Petro’s ambitious environmentally friendly pledge in doubt.

The country’s finance minister, José Ocampo, has stepped in on several occasions to contradict government ministers and reassure financial markets after their comments sent the value of the Colombian peso tumbling.

Ocampo has repeatedly told reporters that the country remains open to new oil and gas projects as it relies heavily on the sector’s revenue.

But Petro backed Vélez’s announcement this week, saying that alternative economies would make up the loss from oil, which accounts for around half of all of Colombia’s total export revenue.

“We are convinced that strong investment in tourism, given the beauty of the country, and the capacity and potential that the country has to generate clean energy, could, in the short term, perfectly fill the void left by fossil fuels,” Petro told reporters in Davos.

Vélez’s doubling down on the policy has been met with criticism from economic analysts who say that halting oil exploration will not affect the global demand for fossil fuels while hurting Colombia’s economy.

Colombia should transition toward clean energy but without “killing its golden-egg-laying goose”, Julio César Vera, former president of the Colombian Association of Petroleum Engineers, told Colombian media.

The policy has also been criticised by environmental experts who say the move does not address the country’s key environmental issues, such as cattle-ranching and unsustainable agriculture which are driving deforestation in the Amazon rainforest, nor will it have any significant effect on the global climate crisis.

“Colombia must not sacrifice its economic growth to make itself the champion of energy transition in Latin America,” said Manuel Rodríguez, who in 1991 became the country’s first environment minister.

“This is a childish and populist idea based on a false narrative because according to the studies, we will lose several points of GDP while making next to no effect on the global consumption of fossil fuels. Another oil-producing country will simply make up for Colombia’s shortfall.”
Newsletter

Related Articles

PanamaTimes
0:00
0:00
Close
Apple warns against drying iPhones with rice
In a recent High Court hearing, the U.S. argued that Julian Assange endangered lives by releasing classified information.
Global Law Enforcement Dismantles Lockbit Ransomware Operation
Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny has died at the Arctic prison colony
The President of Argentina Javier Mile does not fly private, he flies commercial, with the citizens he represents. And they LOVE him for it.
Bitcoin Reaches $50,000 for First Time in Over Two Years
Belo Horizonte: Brazil's Rising Carnival Hotspot for 2024
In El Salvador, the 'Trump of Latin America' stuns the world with a speech slamming woke policing after winning a landslide election
Tucker’s interview with Putin is over 50M views on X within the first 5 hours.
Finnish Airline, Finnair, is voluntarily weighing passengers to better estimate flight cargo weight
President Nayib Bukele has proudly announced El Salvador's remarkable achievement of becoming the safest nation in the Western Hemisphere.
Former Chilean President Sebastian Piñera Dies in Helicopter Crash
This farmer seems to understand science a bit more than the event organizer, Klaus Schwab.
Facebook turns 20: From Mark Zuckerberg's dormitory to a $1trn company
The Coolest Dictator in the World" on the Path to Victory in El Salvador
Macron, France and fake news
Indian-Origin Man 'King' Arrested For Smuggling $16 Million Drugs Into US
Can someone teach Americans that not every person with slanted eyes is Chinese?
Europe's Farmers Feeding the People, Protesting Against Politicians Who Do Nothing for Their Country and Serve Only Themselves at Taxpayers' Expense
Paris Restaurant That Inspired 'Ratatouille' Loses $1.6 Million Worth Of Wine
Brazilian Police Investigate Bolsonaro's Son for Alleged Illegal Spying
Police in Brazil Raid Residence of Bolsonaro Associate Over Allegations of Illegal Spying
Border Dispute Escalates as Texas Governor Vows Increased Razor Wire
OpenAI Enhances ChatGPT-4 Model, Potentially Addressing AI "Laziness" Issue
The NSA finally acknowledges spying on Americans by acquiring sensitive data
Report Reveals Toxic Telegram Group Generating X-Rated AI-Generated Fake Images of Taylor Swift
US Border Patrol States 'No Plans' to Remove Razor Wire Installed in Texas
Bitcoin Experiences Approximately 20% Decline in Value
Klaus Schwab recently appointed himself as the Earth's "trustee of the future."
DeSantis Drops Out, Endorses Trump.
Nikki Haley said former President Trump is "just not at the same level" of mental fitness as he was while president in 2016.
Residents of a southern Mexican town set the government palace on fire in response to the police killing of a young man
Samsung Launches AI-Driven Galaxy S24, Ushering in New Smartphone Era
Judge Questions SEC's Regulatory Overreach in Coinbase Lawsuit
The Ecuador prosecutor who was investigating the television studio attack, has been assassinated.
Is artificial intelligence the solution to cyber security threats?
Vivek Ramaswamy suspends his US election campaign and endorses Trump.
Viral Satire: A Staged Satirical Clip Mistaken as Real Footage from the 2024 World Economic Forum in Davos
The AI Revolution in the Workforce: CEOs at Davos Predict Major Job Cuts in 2024
Ecuador Reports 178 Hostages in Prison Gang Standoff
The Startling Cuban Espionage Case That Has Rattled the US Government
Two Armed Men in Ecuador, Dressed as Batman and The Joker Storm the Streets.
Armed Gang Raids Ecuadorian TV Station Following State of Emergency Declaration
Anti-Democratic Canada: Journalist Arrested for Questioning Canadian Finance Minister on Support of Terrorist Group
Ecuador's 'Most-Wanted' Criminal Vanishes from Prison
Mexican Cartel Supplied Wi-Fi to Locals Under Threat of Fatal Consequences for Non-Compliance
Border Surge Leads to Over 11,000 Migrants Waiting in Northern Mexico
Outsider Candidates Triumph in Latin American Elections
As Argentina Goes to the Polls, Will the Proposal to Replace the Peso with the Dollar Secure Votes?
Fatal Shark Attack Claims Life of Boston Woman Paddleboarding Near Bahamas Resort, According to Police
×