OPEC Secretary-General: G20 members to stick to climate change deal

Secretary-General of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) Mohammed Barkindo said Sunday that the bloc's member states support the G20 leaders' stance towards implementing the Paris Agreement on climate change.

Following the US withdrawal, the remaining 19 members unanimously said the climate change deal is "irreversible", a position supported by OPEC, said Barkindo on the sidelines of the World Petroleum Congress.

All OPEC member countries have signed the agreement, he said.

The 22nd World Petroleum Congress, the largest gathering for the oil and gas industry, started on Sunday in Istanbul with a view to addressing challenges facing the sector.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and G20 leaders during the family photo at G-20 Summit in Hamburg, Germany on Friday. /AFP Photo

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and G20 leaders during the family photo at G-20 Summit in Hamburg, Germany on Friday. /AFP Photo

"The challenges in the petroleum sector have been growing as the world population has been increasing," Jozsef Laszlo Toth, president of the World Petroleum Council, said at the opening ceremony.

In a declaration issued after the conclusion of the G20 summit in Hamburg, world leaders said that they remain "collectively committed" to mitigating greenhouse gas emissions but "take note of" the decision of the United States to withdraw from the agreement.

The Paris Agreement aims to tackle climate change by cutting greenhouse gas emissions and sets a global target of keeping the rise in the average temperature no higher than 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. 

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