Progress In European Oil Majors’ CO2 Emission Cut Targets

Six major European oil and gas companies have made significant progress in curbing their carbon emissions, according to a new review.

However, none of them are coming nowhere near their declared net zero targets, the Transition Pathway Initiative (TPI) said in a research paper published Tuesday.

The investor-led group, supported by more than $19 trillion of global capital, investigated how companies are preparing for the move to a low-carbon economy.

Their climate ambitions strengthened markedly in the last six months, with Total, Shell, BP, Repsol and Eni making commitments to significantly reduce the carbon intensity of the energy they supply, says the report.

Shell, Eni, Total and Repsol are now aligned with the emission reductions pledged by the signatories to the Paris Agreement. BP and OMV are the only European companies who failed to do so.

Despite these commitments, the companies would need to cut their CO2 emissions intensity by more than 70 percent to align with a 2°C climate scenario by 2050, while a genuine net zero strategy would require a 100 percent cut in emissions.

Adam Matthews, Co-Chair of TPI, and Director of Ethics and Engagement for the Church of England Pensions Board, said the European integrated oil and gas sector is changing rapidly.

“Three years ago, no company had set targets to reduce the carbon intensity of the energy they supply. Today all six oil and gas majors assessed by TPI have set such targets and we have seen significant progress in the past months, with companies engaging with the concept of net zero, adopting longer-term perspectives and setting more ambitious goals to accelerate the lowcarbon transition.”

Shell and Eni are leaders in decarbonisation, and Shell has introduced a new concept of not selling energy to customers that are not also aligned to net zero pathways in key sectors such as aviation, shipping and freight, he noted.

Shell’s goal to cut its emissions intensity by 65 percent by 2050 is the most ambitious in the sector and the closest to
alignment with a 2°C scenario, according to the research paper.

Eni is the only company to have set an absolute target, aiming to reduce emissions by 80 percent by 2050. Its carbon intensity is already 10 percent lower than its peers.

The independent analysis of the six large European corporations noted that BP, OMV, Repsol, Shell and Total have indicated they intend to further update investors on their climate ambitions this year.

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