In collaboration with the Climate Policy Journal, we are calling for papers for a special journal issue on Net zero oil and gas value chains: Just transitions by 2040. This call for papers is led by Kirsten Jenkins of the University of Edinburgh and Gökçe Mete of the Stockholm Environment Institute and is part of our Oil and Gas Transitions programme, and co-led by Climate Strategies and the Stockholm Environment Institute. Selected papers are planned to be published in Climate Policy, as part of a Special Issue on this topic. Successful papers will be accepted for publication following a full expert peer-review process.

The deadline for the submission of abstracts is the 15th January 2022.  Please submit the abstracts to:, using “Climate Policy Special Issue” in the email subject line.

If the abstract is selected, full paper submissions will be due to Climate Policy by 28th February 2022. Please see more information and background on the Climate Policy Special Issue below.



Climate Policy

Guest editors:

Kirsten Jenkins, University of Edinburgh

Gökçe Mete, Stockholm Environment Institute

Deadline for Submission of Abstracts: 15 January 2022

Deadline for Submission of Full Papers: 28 February 2022

Theme: Net zero oil and gas value chains: Just transitions by 2040

The latest climate science clearly presents the need for a transition away from further oil and gas exploration.  In May 2021, the International Energy Agency’s net zero 2050 roadmap highlighted that Paris-aligned decarbonisation does not allow for investment in new oil and gas fields. Further driven by the decline of many oil and gas fields in the global North, net zero ambitions, and the widespread declaration of a climate emergency, rapid change is required and will be mandated across the whole value chains. Indeed, the transition away from oil and gas is increasingly a supply-based and market necessity given shifts in demand-side dynamics, including electrification. Denmark, as a leader in the oil and gas transition, has already cancelled new oil and gas permits and is pursuing the phase-out existing oil production in the Danish North Sea by 2050. Progress in other areas of the world, however, is more phlegmatic, giving rise to a landscape of both “leaders” and “laggards”.

The extraction, production and delivery of oil and gas is, of course, not limited to the oil tankers, platforms and pipelines that initially come to mind. Oil and gas value chains encompass a vast range of activities including but not limited exploration and production, trading, refining, distribution and retail and marketing, all of which will also have to transition to facilitate and reach net zero GHG emission targets. These value chain transitions will have large-scale implications for a range of labour forces, including platform workers – and many of whom have not yet been widely appreciated, such as helicopter pilots, component makers and tanker drivers.

This Special Issue will therefore unite the need for market-led oil and gas just transition with net zero emission ambitions, critically analysing the potential for a just transition by 2040. Such a just transition will  ensure due process and fair outcomes for workers and communities across the whole oil and gas value chain. We employ a pathway to 2040 because, even in countries such as Denmark where there is an “oil stop” deadline of 2050, there is an expectation of significant production as late as 2040. The 2021 Production Gap Report, however, finds that compared to global production levels under the 2°C-consistent pathways, governments’ fossil fuel supply production plans and projections would lead to 120% more coal, 14% more oil, and 15% more gas in 2030. The production gaps for all fuels becomes much more significant by 2040 for an under 2°C-or 1.5°C- temperature limit and thus, this timeline needs to be critically assessed.

Globally, we cannot reach the emissions reductions necessary to meet a 1.5°C or even a 2°C target overnight. Evidence from the Oil and Gas Transitions project suggest that net zero targets for oil and gas sector should be more ambitious.

Special Issue papers will ideally engage with a broad geographical scope, either within or across each contribution, including, for example, the United Arab Emirates, Nigeria, Norway and the United Kingdom, in order to showcase both leaders and laggards, developed and emerging economies. Papers will also variously consider a range of barriers and opportunities, including corporate and state-led initiatives.

To unite the contributions, all papers will draw upon just transitions definitions, principles or indicators, which are frequently summarised to:

  1. Actively encourage decarbonisation.
  2. Avoid the creation of carbon lock-in and more “losers” in these sectors.
  3. Support affected regions and communities.
  4. Support workers, their families and the wider community affected by closures or downscaling.
  5. Clean up environmental damage and ensure that related costs are not transferred from the private to the public sector, and from current to future generations of people.
  6. Address existing economic and social inequalities.
  7. Ensure an inclusive, transparent planning and transition processes.

These principles act as guidelines that will ensure environmental protection and restoration, diversify industry and other economic activities, and tackle socio-economic and gender inequality. They set the scene for papers that will make a novel and necessary contribution to Climate Policy.

Possible topics for papers include but are not restricted to:

  • The market necessity for an orderly and just transition by 2040
  • Oil and gas phase out strategies from emerging economies and developing countries by 2040
  • The economics of an oil and gas exit – international and country level assessment of the costs and co-benefits of transition
  • Governance and institutional changes required to manage an oil and gas transition – across corporate, national and sub-national levels
  • Case studies from first movers to laggards, with generalisable policy-relevant lessons from these

We are also looking to complement articles previously published by Climate Policy in its 2020 Special Issue (Vol. 20, Issue 8): Curbing Fossil Fuel Supply to Achieve Climate Goals

In total, we are seeking to publish 10 articles. Alongside their content and academic excellence, we will select papers taking into account geographical spread, the diversity of authorship, disciplinary and thematic diversity (e.g., from politics to the economics), climate policy relevance and that represent both leaders and laggards in the oil and case transition.

Submission Procedure

If you are interested to submit a paper to this call, please share an Abstract with us via email as a first step (see details above).

Once the abstracts have been approved by the Guest Editors, we will invite authors to submit their manuscript to Climate Policy, according to the journal procedures, see link for authors here.