The deputy prime minister of Iraq has become the first member of an OPEC (Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) nation to call on oil-producing countries to reduce their dependence on fossil fuels and instead turn to solar power and nuclear reactors.
Ali Allawi’s announcement came just ahead of a key OPEC meeting, where negotiations were set to be made regarding oil production, as well as discussions to be had regarding the climate crisis.
With the climate crisis looming, Allawi and Fatih Birol, executive director of the International Energy Agency, wrote, “To stand a chance of limiting the worst effects of climate change, the world needs to fundamentally change the way it produces and consumes energy […]. If oil revenues start to decline before producer countries have successfully diversified their economies, livelihoods will be lost and poverty rates will increase.”
The deputy prime minister’s call to action is an effort to halt negative fossil fuel effects on the environment, as well as to create new jobs ahead of time for the workers who would be on track to lose theirs with new climate regulations and restrictions.