Pope urges oil majors to combat global warming, aid poor

Pope warns oil executives: Climate change may ‘destroy civilization’ | TheHill

Pope Francis urged oil and energy industry executives to be leaders on the environment as he met with them Saturday in a first-of-its-kind conference at the Vatican. Pope Francis, who penned a 2015 encyclical on climate change, writing that it was both real and primarily human-caused, told the gathered executives, "Civilization requires energy, but energy use must not destroy civilization".

"We know that the challenges facing us are interconnected".

He said that modern society with its "massive movement of information, persons and things requires an vast supply of energy", and still, he pointed out, as many as one billion people lack electricity.

"But that energy should also be clean, by a reduction in the systematic use of fossil fuels", he added. He also warned that in an effort to bring energy sources to everyone, we must be careful not to raise global temperatures, damage the environment, or increase the number of people living in poverty.

About 50 people participated in the conference, including Claudio Descalzi, head of Italy's Eni, Bob Dudley of BP, Darren Woods, CEO of ExxonMobil, Eldar Saetre, Vicki Hollub of Occidental Petroleum, and investors, including Larry Fink of BlackRock.

The papal conference comes a little more than a year after President Trump's announcement that the USA would pull out of the 2015 Paris Agreement, the world's first global pact to address climate change.

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"I think that all can agree that there needs to be a shift from fossil fuels to alternative forms of energy, but the debate is how long is that transition period going to be", Finn said.

"Since clothes make the man, we thought we'd have a flight suit like ours made for you", Italian astronaut Paolo Nespoli told the pope at a meeting in the Vatican also attended by four other Space Station veterans - three Americans and one Russian.

In 2015, he devoted his second encyclical on calling for policies to reduce emissions of polluting gases.

The International Energy Agency (IEA) has said that global energy demand rise will grow 30 percent by 2040.

Many had complied, he said, including by expediting plans to stop coal burning at the university power plant.

On Saturday, the pope reiterated his call for a transition from fossil fuels "to a greater use of energy sources that are highly efficient while producing low levels of pollution". It is the poor who suffer most from the ravages of global warming, with increasing disruption in the agricultural sector, water insecurity, and exposure to severe weather events.

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