Equinor clings to ‘emissions intensity’ targets
But more shareholders want to see absolute CO2 reductions
For how long can publicly traded oil companies resist calls to reduce their absolute emissions? Norway’s semi-state owned oil company Equinor continues to focus on its emissions intensity – a flexible measure that allows oil production and absolute emissions to rise, even as it aims for ‘net zero’ by 2050. This approach defers painful absolute reductions beyond 2030, which is giving some shareholders cause for concern.
Equinor this week brought its energy transition strategy into line with that of industry leader Shell by setting interim emissions reduction targets for 2030. The new strategy, released at its 2021 capital markets day, envisages a strong uptick in renewables investments – but stops short of committing to absolute global CO2e reductions before 2050.
The company set an “ambition” to reach a 20% reduction in net carbon intensity by 2030 and 40% by 2035, compared to a 2019 baseline. To its credit, this covers Scope 1 and 2 emissions on a 100%…