The world’s largest oilfield services company, Schlumberger Ltd., is taking on climate change, announcing it will commit to reducing its emissions using science-based targets.
The commitment to cut greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions has been submitted to the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) and, in line with the defined criteria, Schlumberger plans to define its reduction target by 2021. The commitment, it said, is part of the company’s thought leadership and focus on environmental and social sustainability through its industry-leading Global Stewardship program.
“The energy industry has a key role to play in reducing the effects of climate change,” CEO Olivier Le Peuch said. “Schlumberger seeks to lead positive, measurable changes in GHG emissions within the industry to help reduce climate change. The application of our industry-leading environmentally responsible technologies will help drive process efficiency and environmental footprint reduction.”
Science-based targets in line with the latest climate science are required to meet the goals of the United Nations (UN) climate change accord, otherwise known as the Paris Agreement, developed in late 2015 by nearly 200 countries. The agreement focuses on limiting global warming to below 2 degrees C above pre-industrial levels.
The Trump administration recently signaled it is formally withdrawing the United States from the accord next November.
The SBTi champions science-based target setting as a way of boosting a company’s competitive advantage in the transition to the low-carbon economy. It is a collaboration between CDP, the UN, World Resources Institute and the World Wide Fund for Nature, as well as one of the We Mean Business Coalition commitments.
Many oil and gas operators have taken on voluntary climate change initiatives over the past few years, some spurred by shareholders. Many are among Schlumberger’s biggest customers.
BP plc shareholders last May by a vote of 99% approved a resolution to align the business strategy with the UN accord, accepting a resolution drafted by Climate Action 100+, a group of about 300 investors with more than $33 trillion in assets under management.
BP, ExxonMobil Corp., Royal Dutch Shell plc and Total SA are corporate founders of the Climate Leadership Council, which is working to replace some U.S. environmental regulations with a simplified carbon tax on businesses.
Earlier this month, a coalition of U.S. natural gas and oil producers formed in late 2017 to innovate and add best practices to improve environmental performance and reduce emissions from Lower 48 operations said it has grown to 69 members and represents more than one-third of total domestic output.
Also this month the Natural Gas Supply Association (NGSA), which counts among its members some of the world's largest gas producers and marketers, said it supported carbon pricing "as a critical pathway to aggressively reducing carbon emissions."
NGSA member companies include BP, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil, Shell and Total.