Greenland has suspended all future oil exploration due to climate change concerns, in an effort to show the country’s government is taking the climate crisis seriously.

The government had made the climate crisis a top concern since entering office in April, and though the underground is expected to contain large deposits of unexplored oil, the need to protect the country’s natural resources is taking precedence.

The government said in a statement that it “has decided to cease issuing new licenses for oil and gas exploration in Greenland. This step has been taken for the sake of our nature, for the sake of our fisheries, for the sake of our tourism industry, and to focus our business on sustainable potentials.”

The Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS) estimates that there are almost 18 billion undiscovered oil barrels on the west coast of Greenland. Large deposits are also expected to hide below the seabed on the east coast of the island.

Though this legislative action is a win for the climate, it cuts off potential investments that could have aided efforts to gain economic independence from Denmark, which currently controls the island’s foreign, defense and security policy as well as an annual grant that accounts for about two-thirds of the Arctic island’s economy.

This decision to halt oil exploration comes at a time where the giant island sees an accelerated effect of climate change. Since 1880, the average sea levels have risen about 9 inches and about a quarter of that increase comes from ice melting in the Greenland and Antarctica ice sheets, according to an NOAA Climate study.

“The future does not lie in oil. The future belongs to renewable energy, and in that respect we have much more to gain,” the government added.

A number of other European countries in recent years have also ended plans for future oil exploration, including Denmark, France, Spain and Ireland, according to Bloomberg.