Cop: Oil, gas firms pledge emissions cuts from operations

  • : Crude oil, Natural gas
  • 23/12/02

Dubai, 2 December (Argus) — A total of 50 oil and gas companies, representing over 40pc of global oil production, today signed the Oil and Gas Decarbonisation Charter, pledging to “net-zero operations” by 2050 and “near-zero upstream methane emissions” by 2030.

Signatories promised to end routine flaring by 2030. The charter also commits them to “work towards industry best practices in emission reductions”, as well as increase transparency, including through measuring, monitoring and reporting on their emissions and progress in cutting these. The companies have also pledged to invest in “the energy system of the future including renewables, low-carbon fuels and negative emissions technologies”.

The charter is part of the overarching Global Decarbonisation Accelerator, launched today at the Cop 28 UN climate summit in Dubai, UAE, where 117 countries also agreed to triple the world's renewable energy generation capacity and to double the global average annual rate of energy efficiency improvements.

Of the oil and gas charter signatory firms, over 60pc are national oil companies. They include the UAE's Adnoc and Snoc, Norway's Equinor, Kazakhstan's Kazmunaigas, Nigeria's NNPC, Indonesia's Pertamina, Brazil's Petrobras, Saudi Arabia's Aramco and Azerbaijan's Socar. International oil company signatories include BP, Eni, ExxonMobil, Lukoil, Mitsui, Occidental, Repsol, Shell and TotalEnergies.

“Whilst many national oil companies have adopted net zero 2050 targets for the first time, I know that they and others, can and need to do more. We need the entire industry to keep 1.5°C within reach and set even stronger ambitions for decarbonisation”, Cop 28 president Sultan al-Jaber said. Al-Jaber is chief executive of the UAE's state-owned Adnoc.

“The oil and gas companies that joined the charter committed to reach net-zero emissions by 2050, but this is only for their own operations,” research organisation WRI global climate programme director Melanie Robinson said, stressing that it does not cover the fuel they sell.

Civil society organisation Oil Change International Oil Change International David Tong also warned that the deal was filled with “recycled commitments” and that the pledge cannot be a substitute for a formal negotiated outcome at Cop 28.

On methane Robinson said that is encouraging that some national oil companies have set methane reduction targets for the first time, but pointed to the fact that most international oil and gas companies already have “stringent requirements” and that measure to verify progress towards the targets will have to be put in place to hold oil and gas companies accountable.

Limiting warming to 1.5°C would require hydrocarbon production to fall by 75pc by 2050, according to IEA net zero pathway scenario. Oil and gas operations account for nearly 15pc of energy-related greenhouse gas emissions, according to the IEA, while consumption of oil and gas accounts for another 40pc.

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