Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Saudi Arabia fears reduced oil revenue, wants compensation

This takes a certain amount of chutzpah; they figure they're entitled to compensation for any possible drop in oil consumption obtained by those nasty environmentalists:

Saudi Arabia, which has the world's largest oil reserves and earned nearly $300bn in fossil fuel exports last year, will seek financial compensation for any loss it incurs if and when production declines after a new climate change agreement is reached.

The move, which was confirmed by UN officials at the UN climate talks in Bonn this week, matches demands made by the world's poorest countries for money to adapt to climate change.

Saudi Arabia and some other Opec oil-producing countries claim that they will have to adapt their economies to a world which uses less oil and say they could lose as much as $19bn a year if countries are forced to cut fossil fuel use. Their argument is that they have only oil and sand as resources and it would be unfair to penalise them. Saudi Arabia first raised the idea of compensation for lost oil revenues at climate talks in Bangkok last year, in the run-up to the Copenhagen climate summit.

From the Guardian. Perhaps the UN should suggest that they spend some of the wealth they've accumulated from oil on solar panels; that ought to provide them with a decent amount of revenue (they do get rather a lot of sunshine, after all). They could probably supply the entire Middle East and Central Asia with electricity if they did that. Failing that, maybe the world should just tell King Abdullah to rub salt in his arse.

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