Azerbaijan news

Top U.S. Energy Diplomat on Azeri presidency of COP29, Ukraine and Putin

The Biden administration’s top diplomat overseeing energy policy on Wednesday called Russia’s war in Ukraine ‘a catastrophic strategic’ failure for Vladimir Putin, saying that it was “one of the world’s great examples of self-harm,” TURAN’s Washungton correspondent reports.

“Russia has lost Europe as an energy market, and Europe will never again view Russia as a reliable energy supplier,” Geoffrey Pyatt, assistant secretary of State for energy resources, told a briefing when responding to TURAN’s questions.

According to him, the Ukrainian economy has fundamentally reoriented itself towards the West: “Ukraine today is more united as a country than it has ever been before in its independent history. Ukraine has a clear pathway to membership in the European Union. NATO is stronger and larger than it was before Putin began this tragic invasion.”

“This war will be recorded by history as an extraordinary strategic failure for Vladimir Putin,” he emphasized.

Pyatt was speaking to reporters during a briefing organized by the State Department’s Washington Foreign Press Center to discuss the latest CERAWeek, the world’s largest energy conference, which took place in Houston, Texas last week.

Azerbaijan was also present at the CERAWeek, represented by COP29 CEO Elnur Soltanov.  “I had very good discussions in Houston with the deputy energy minister [Soltanov]. I also had excellent discussions a few weeks ago when the energy minister himself was here in Washington. I underlined the United States’ very strong support to the Azeri presidency of COP29,” Pyatt said.

Asked by TURAN if the U.S. expected any deliverables from this year’s COP summit, Pyatt said, the U.S. was “very, very supportive” of the announcement that Ilham Aliyev made in terms of Azerbaijan’s adherence to the Global Methane Pledge. “And we’re working now with companies like BP and Chevron and Exxon Mobile that are active in the Caspian region to look at opportunities to capture more of the methane and associated gases that have come from the countries that have recently signed the Global Methane Pledge in the region, so Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, and Kazakhstan,” he said.

He went on to add, “We are also very interested in continuing the work that [COP28 chief] Dr. Sultan Al Jaber did so effectively at COP28 to bring along the global energy companies, the national oil companies…. On a lot of these issues of decarbonization, methane abatement, carbon sequestration, the greatest part of the work has to be done with the national oil companies.  And so the work that UAE did in that regard was most welcome.”

Pyatt concluded: “So we have a very deep agenda of priorities for COP29, and I think based on my conversations with the COP president [Soltanov] at Houston, I’m confident that there’s a strong degree of alignment between the goals that President Aliyev set and the goals that the United States is going to bring to that – the next COP and then also as we head towards Brazil in 2025.”

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