UK government investment in overseas oil ends, but Mozambique gas project continues

Press release
At the Climate Ambition Summit today Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the UK will ‘end direct support’ in overseas oil and gas projects but has left a loophole for some projects.
  Published:  12 Dec 2020    |      2 minute read

Today the UK government announced it will stop funding oil and gas projects abroad in a victory for climate justice. 

  • Climate wrecking Mozambique Gas mega project still going ahead despite today's announcement and Friends of the Earth's legal challenge 
  • Friends of the Earth is challenging the Mozambique decision in the courts and has campaigned for a long time on this issue, delivering a petition to Downing Street to stop funding overseas fossil fuel projects 
  • Today’s announcement is significant progress, and a huge win for the climate movement that other countries should follow 

At the Climate Ambition Summit today Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the UK will ‘end direct support’ in overseas oil and gas projects but has left a loophole for some projects 

Friends of the Earth climate campaigner, Rachel Kennerley, said:  

“It is great that the PM has recognised we can’t continue to fund climate wrecking oil and gas overseas. Ending investment in all overseas fossil fuel projects will help us meet our climate commitments, but there can be no exceptions. 

“Under the new rules announced today, a climate-wrecking gas mega-project in Mozambique that has displaced thousands of people would be in doubt, yet the decision to spend $1billion on this project was decided just a few months ago. 

“We think that the decision to fund this project was illegal, so Friends of the Earth is challenging the government’s decision in the courts. This is because we think the government is in breach of international standards on the environment and human rights and has failed to properly consider climate change.”  

Friends of the Earth says emissions must be slashed here and overseas and use our wealth to help other countries adapt to the impacts of climate breakdown while we still can. A way to achieve this is investing public money in renewables projects, with huge job creation prospects.  

People at the sharp end of climate disaster who experience devastating flood, drought, and crop failure have done the least to cause this crisis. As a country with a legacy of pumping out climate-wrecking pollution, the U.K should use our relative wealth to help other countries cope with climate breakdown. 

There’s still a chance for the government to end all support for fossil fuel projects overseas, with no exceptions, before the UK hosts the U.N climate talks at the end of 2021.