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BP Aims for Net Zero by 2050


In an announcement that might have sounded familiar to Northeast heating fuel dealers — especially those hundreds who approved the Providence Resolution last September — oil and gas supermajor BP said it would strive to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The organization also went several steps further in saying it would “help the world get to net zero” and would essentially reinvent itself in order to hit these targets.

In its February 12 announcement, BP listed 10 aims to support its ambition: five for getting the corporation to net zero and five for helping the world do so. Of particular note, the company aims to achieve a “50% cut in the carbon intensity of products BP sells by 2050 or sooner” and to “Install methane measurement at all BP’s major oil and gas processing sites by 2023 and reduce methane intensity of operations by 50%.”

The Providence Summit calls for the Northeast heating fuel industry to achieve 15% emissions reductions by 2023, 40% reductions by 2030 and net-zero emissions by 2050.

BP’s announcement also included some information on how the corporation would reorganize to achieve its newly stated goals. The reorganized BP will comprise four business groups: Production & Operations, led by Gorden Birrell; Customers & Products, headed by Emma Delaney; Gas & Low Carbon Energy, led by Dev Sanyal; and Innovation & Engineering, headed by David Eyton. There will also be three “integrators to identify and maximise [sic] opportunities”: Sustainability & Strategy, headed by Giulia Chierchia; Regions, Cities & Solutions, led by William Lin; and Trading & Shipping,
led by Carol Howle. Four “core enablers” will “support business delivery”: Finance, led by Murray Auchincloss; Legal, headed by Eric Nichter; People & Culture, headed by Kerry Dryburgh; and Communications & Advocacy, led by Geoff Morrell.

Perhaps coincidentally, the breakdowns somewhat resemble the five working groups that Northeast heating fuel industry leaders are establishing to achieve the goals of the Providence Resolution. Coincidence or not, BP added it would “host a capital markets day in September to set out its strategy and near-term plans.” Also in September 2020, the Northeast heating fuel taskforce intends to release its “roadmap” for the industry to achieve the goals of the Providence Resolution (see “First Look: 2020 HEAT Show” from last issue).

Bernard Looney, who was named CEO of BP exactly one week prior to the company’s “net zero” announcement, stated: “The world’s carbon budget is finite and running out fast; we need a rapid transition to net zero. We all want energy that is reliable and affordable, but that is no longer enough. It must also be cleaner. To deliver that, trillions of dollars will need to be invested in replumbing and rewiring the world’s energy system.
It will require nothing short of reimagining energy as we know it.

“This will certainly be a challenge, but also a tremendous opportunity. It is clear to me, and to our stakeholders, that for BP to play our part and serve our purpose, we have to change. And we want to change – this is the right thing for the world and for BP.”

“Energy markets are changing, driven by climate change, technology and societal expectations,” commented BP Chairman Heldge Lund, “and the Board supports Bernard and his new leadership team’s ambition for BP.”


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