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More than 99 percent of BP’s shareholders voted in favor of a climate change shareholder resolution on Tuesday, pushing the UK oil and gas supermajor to set out a business strategy consistent with the climate goals of the Paris Agreement.
BP, along with other oil majors, has been facing increased investor pressure to start addressing climate change risks and set emission reduction targets if the world is ever to achieve the Paris Agreement targets.
At BP’s annual general meeting in Aberdeen on Tuesday, 99.14 percent of shareholders voted for the binding climate change resolution filed by investors acting as part of the Climate Action 100+ investor initiative, and supported by the BP board.
“Investors will reserve judgement and expect BP’s response to be sufficiently robust. They will pay close attention to how it addresses emissions across its full value chain and expect to see clear evidence that any future material capex investment is consistent with the goals of the Paris Agreement,” said Stephanie Pfeifer, a member of the global Climate Action 100+ Steering Committee and CEO at the Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change (IIGCC).
Another, more stringent resolution calling for BP to include emissions of its customers in climate goals, was rejected by BP’s shareholders. Such customer-emission reporting is not supported by BP’s management either.
Shell, for example, announced earlier this year its first-ever short-term goals to cut the carbon footprint of its operations and product sales. In December last year, in an industry first, Shell said that it plans to set short-term targets for reducing the net carbon footprint of the energy products it sells, and to link those targets with executive remuneration.
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However, Shell’s core business is and will continue to be oil and gas for the foreseeable future, the supermajor’s chief executive Ben van Beurden said last fall.
“We aim play our part in the transition and to deliver on a strategy that is consistent with the goals of the Paris Agreement,” BP’s chairman
Helge Lund said at today’s shareholders meeting in Aberdeen, while climate change activists shouted “this is a crime scene” outside the building where the meeting was held.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.