Norway's Eksfin accused of ‘climate hypocrisy’ for financing Turkish gas field

(Enviro News, Lagos, 9 June 2023) The Norwegian government has been accused of climate hypocrisy after it emerged that the government export credit agency, Eksfin, has approved finance for the Sakarya gas field in the Black Sea. The Sakarya gas field project, owned by Turkish Petroleum, a Turkish state-owned enterprise, is considered to contain “the largest gas reserves discovered in the Turkish Exclusive Economic Zone as well as in the Black Sea.” The field is set to continue production “until the field reaches its economic limit in 2057.” Norway has previously been criticised for being the last country in north-west Europe to not sign the Glasgow Statement, an agreement at the COP26 climate conference that commits signatories to end government-backed finance for international fossil fuel projects. Previous analysis of the Sakarya gas field by Oil Change International shows that the project will emit at least 140 million tonnes of carbon dioxide in its first phase. Norway’s annual emissions of 48.9 million tonnes (as of 2022) mean this project will emit nearly three times the annual emissions of the entire country. Campaigners are accusing the Norwegian government of inconsistency and hypocrisy. While Norway is a major donor to aid projects that help developing countries mitigate and adapt to climate change, it is also financing fossil fuel projects that make climate change worse.