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City A.M

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Shell Focuses on Investor Returns as Climate Goals Take a Backseat

  • Shell CEO received £7.94 million despite the company lowering its net zero targets.
  • New targets focus on reducing the carbon intensity of products sold, not necessarily overall emissions reduction.
  • Environmentalists criticize the move, highlighting a potential conflict between profit and climate action.
Shell

The head of Shell received nearly £8m last year as the petrol giant cut executive pay following a drop in energy prices.

The firm handed chief executive Wael Sawan, who took over the role from longstanding predecessor Ben van Beurden in January of 2023, a total pay packet worth £7.94m.

This comprised a base salary of £1.40m, an annual bonus of £2.71m and a £2.60m long-term incentive payment, among other payments.

This figure ranks more than van Beurden’s 2021 pay packet, but less than the £9.7m the former chief received after a bumper 2022 sent profit through the roof.

It also ranks slightly behind the sum taken for the period by Murray Auchincloss, head of fellow UK fossil fuel major BP.

Both firms hope to keep investors happy with bumper buyback programmes planned for the next few months.

The news comes as Shell announced its new energy transition plan for 2024.

According to the published release, the company will look to alter the “carbon intensity” of the products it sells by 15-20 percent by 2030 compared to 2016 levels.

The previously announced target was a firm 20 percent.

Related: The No.1 Energy Stock for 2024

The firm also set a new ambition to reduce the emissions created by its oil products by 15-20 percent by 2030 compared to 2021.

It also dropped a plan to reduce net carbon intensity, i.e the emissions produced by each unit of energy that Shell sells, by 45 percent by 2035 due to “uncertainty in the pace of change in the energy transition.”

However, a reduction in the intensity does not mean the company’s overall emissions will drop.

Even if the intensity is lower, the company could increase its sales, keeping overall emissions stable or even drive them higher.

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“The biggest driver for reducing our net carbon intensity is increasing the sales of and demand for low-carbon energy,” Shell said.

By CityAM

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  • George Doolittle on March 14 2024 said:
    Russia does appear to have knocked out of the entire global economy quite forcefully now. Inflation is raging away everywhere now as well plus War. Food is quickly becoming the new gold would appear. Long $nsc Norfolk Southern Railroad strong buy

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