It’s an unpalatable truth but the fossil fuel industry is, at its root, “one of the biggest redistributions of wealth from the world’s poor to the richest petrostates”. Poor countries like India, South Sudan and Bangladesh bear the brunt of floods, wildfires and other disasters caused by or exacerbated by rising temperatures from carbon emissions.
According to the International Energy Agency, profits in the oil and gas industry were $4 trillion. As Gordon Brown, writes in The Guardian, $4 trillion "is a bigger sum than the entire UK economy and about 20 times all the international aid budgets of the world."
The level of profit of the national oil and gas companies is so massive that each can afford to pay a levy towards "the $1 trillion a year now required to meet the climate and development needs of the global south.“
As Cop28 gets closer, Brown concludes by saying that “if future summits are to enjoy any credibility in the global south, the deadlock on finance has to be broken. A breakthrough at Cop28 will elude us without intense public pressure on the host country to produce a plan."