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A net-zero Saudi Arabia? Not so fast

The kingdom is unlikely to achieve net zero emissions soon, but the ambition to do so, and the plan, is an impactful step in the right direction.
Attendees are pictured during the opening ceremony of the Saudi Green Initiative forum, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Oct. 23, 2021.

Saudi Arabia told the world Oct. 22 it would eliminate or offset its greenhouse gas emissions by 2060, the same target the Chinese government has set.

The gargantuan task of decarbonizing Saudi Arabia is evident in a single statistic: The kingdom is the world No. 4 consumer of oil. That is way out proportion to its economy, the world’s 20th biggest, and its population, ranked 41st.

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