Greenland bans future oil and gas exploration

Greenland bans future oil and gas exploration

20 Jul 2021

Due to concerns about climate changes, the Greenlandic government has interrupted all new oil and gas exploration in the world's largest island. The autonomous territory is estimated to hold huge unexplored deposits of oil. However, based on economic calculations, the government believes that the costs involved in extracting it are enormous.

The west coast of Greenland is estimated to contain US$2.86bn of de-risked barrels of oil, according to the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS). Moreover, significant oil deposits are likely to be present below the seabed on the east coast of the island.

The Greenlandic government said that its decision to suspend the exploration is motivated by considerations of its impact on climate and the environment. With this decision, new licences for oil and gas exploration in Greenland will not be issued.

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