Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

ExxonMobil Lambasted Over 'Grossly Insufficient' Emissions Reduction Plan

Business
ExxonMobil Lambasted Over 'Grossly Insufficient' Emissions Reduction Plan
The ExxonMobil refinery in Baytown, Texas, seen across the Houston Ship Channel from Lynchburg Landing. Roy Luck / CC BY 2.0

By Andrea Germanos

ExxonMobil's Monday announcement of new targets for addressing greenhouse gas emissions was met with derision by climate advocates who called the plan "too little, too late."



The targets cover the next five years, include "input from shareholders," and — according to the fossil fuel company — are in line with the goals of the Paris climate accord.

While some aspects of the plan, like a reduction in "flaring" of natural gas, were welcomed, others, like Exxon's goal of reducing emissions intensity — not absolute emissions — came in for sharp scrutiny.

According to Reuters,

Exxon said it would start reporting so-called Scope 3 emissions in 2021, a large category of greenhouse gases emitted from fuels and products it sells to customers, such as jet fuel and gasoline.
By 2025, Exxon would reduce the intensity of its oilfield greenhouse gas emissions by 15% to 20% from 2016 levels. It did not set an overall emissions target, however, and reducing intensity means that emissions still could rise if oil and gas output grows.
The reduction would be supported by a 40%-50% decrease in methane intensity and a 35%-45% decrease in flaring intensity across Exxon's global operations, with routine natural gas flaring eliminated within a decade, the company said.

Youth-led climate group Sunrise Movement declared the targets "grossly insufficient" and took the company to task for not announcing an end to "exploration or extraction" or "lobbying against climate action."

"ExxonMobil's newly announced five-year plan is too little, too late," said Kathy Mulvey, accountability director in the Climate and Energy Program at the Union of Concerned Scientists.

Rejecting Exxon's description, Mulvey said the pledges "fall far short of what is needed to meet the principal goal of the Paris agreement." She further accused the company dodging "its responsibility for heat-trapping emissions resulting from the burning of its oil and gas products."

"ExxonMobil now says it will disclose these emissions, which make up the lion's share — roughly 80 to 90 percent — of company emissions," she continued. "However, in the same breath ExxonMobil attempts to shift their responsibility to the consumers using its products exactly as the company intends them to be used."

Mulvey further pointed to Exxon being "the fourth leading contributor of global carbon dioxide and methane emissions from fossil fuel and cement industries over the last 50 years, during which time the company undeniably knew about its products' harmful climate impacts. This bait-and-switch, along with ExxonMobil's decades-long record of lying to consumers about the climate risks of its products, are reminiscent of the tobacco industry's tactics."

"Any company that fails to keep pace with what science demands," Mulvey continued, "threatens its future while endangering the rest of us with escalating climate impacts and systemic risks to the global economy."

Reposted with permission from Common Dreams.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres delivers a video speech at the high-level meeting of the 46th session of the United Nations Human Rights Council UNHRC in Geneva, Switzerland on Feb. 22, 2021. Xinhua / Zhang Cheng via Getty Images

By Anke Rasper

"Today's interim report from the UNFCCC is a red alert for our planet," said UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.

The report, released Friday, looks at the national climate efforts of 75 states that have already submitted their updated "nationally determined contributions," or NDCs. The countries included in the report are responsible for about 30% of the world's global greenhouse gas emissions.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

New Delhi's smog is particularly thick, increasing the risk of vehicle accidents. SAJJAD HUSSAIN / AFP via Getty Images

India's New Delhi has been called the "world air pollution capital" for its high concentrations of particulate matter that make it harder for its residents to breathe and see. But one thing has puzzled scientists, according to The Guardian. Why does New Delhi see more blinding smogs than other polluted Asian cities, such as Beijing?

Read More Show Less

Trending

A bridge over the Delaware river connects New Hope, Pennsylvania with Lambertville, New Jersey. Richard T. Nowitz / Getty Images

In a historic move, the Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC) voted Thursday to ban hydraulic fracking in the region. The ban was supported by all four basin states — New Jersey, Delaware, Pennsylvania and New York — putting a permanent end to hydraulic fracking for natural gas along the 13,539-square-mile basin, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

Read More Show Less
A 3-hour special film by EarthxTV calls for protection of the Amazon and its indigenous populations. EarthxTV.org

To save the planet, we must save the Amazon rainforest. To save the rainforest, we must save its indigenous peoples. And to do that, we must demarcate their land.

Read More Show Less
A rare bird not seen for 170 years has turned up in Borneo's South Kalimantan province in Indonesia. robas / Getty Images

In October 2020, two men living in Indonesia's South Kalimantan province on Borneo managed to catch a bird that they had never seen before. They photographed and released it, then sent the pictures to birdwatching organizations in the area for identification.

Read More Show Less