under the spotlight
Transparent data and visualization about the world's biggest fossil fuel extraction projects, and their links with companies and banks
Carbon bombs at a glance
A carbon bomb* is a fossil fuel extraction project that will generate more than one gigatonne of CO₂ (1 GtCO₂) over its remaining lifetime.
There are currently 425 carbon bombs in the world, either already operating or in starting phase. These projects significantly threaten the Paris Agreement climate targets, which call for a certain carbon budget to be respected in order to stay below 1.5°C warming compared to the pre-industrial era.
Carbon bombs are the 425 largest fossil fuel projects but represent only around 45% of oil and gas extraction projects and 25% for coal of the total emissions likely to be generated by the entire fossil fuel extraction sector. These few projects each represent a high level of emission, which makes them a priority to tackle: defusing a single bomb means stopping the equivalent of hundreds of more fragmented projects.*as defined in the research paper “Carbon Bombs - Mapping key fossil fuel projects" by Kjell Kühne
Carbon bombs worldwide
425 fossil fuel projects around the world will generate more than 1 gigatonne of CO₂ emissions during their lifetime.
Carbon bombs consume twice the remaining 1.5°C carbon budget
The cumulated volume of emissions generated by all the projects is twice larger than the 1.5°C carbon budget.
There should be no new fossil investments from that year
IEA executive director called for a ban on new investments in oil, gas and coal after 2021.
had not started in 2020
But every year, more and more carbon bombs enter into operating phase.
Who is behind
a carbon bomb?
Banks can finance carbon bombs either directly or indirectly:
Directly, through project financing :
A bank finances a specific fossil fuel extraction project.
Indirectly, through corporate financing :
A bank finances a fossil fuel company, which can use this money for any of its projects. This is the most common form of financing.
Each carbon bomb is operated and or owned by one or several fossil fuel companies. These companies manage the exploration and extraction of oil, gas and/or coal resources.Check the companies
Insurance providers offer financial loss protection again certain risks related to fossil fuel extraction projects (business interruption insurance, workers' compensation insurance...). They play a vital role in the feasibility of carbon bombs.
*[Work in progress to add the insurers in the platform]
Carbon BombCheck the map
Learn more about carbon bombs
Key figures about carbon bombs
Top 10 carbon bombs by remaining lifetime emissions
Top 12 countries by lifetime emissions of domestic carbon bombs