80% of the gases that warm the Earth come from 57 oil and cement companies

Most of the global CO2 emissions produced since the Paris Agreement (2016-2022) can be attributed to a small group of large private and state oil companies that do not stop their production and the generation of greenhouse gases that they emit into the world.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
03 April 2024 Wednesday 05:06
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80% of the gases that warm the Earth come from 57 oil and cement companies

Most of the global CO2 emissions produced since the Paris Agreement (2016-2022) can be attributed to a small group of large private and state oil companies that do not stop their production and the generation of greenhouse gases that they emit into the world. atmosphere. Specifically, only 57 corporations and state entities are responsible for 80% of the global CO2 emissions that have occurred since the Paris Agreement.

This is according to a report by the London-based think tank InfluenceMap, which uses the Carbon Majors database to quantify the contribution made by the world's largest oil, gas and coal companies as well as cement producers to global emissions. of carbon, which are the main driver of climate change.

This report shows (broadening the focus of responsibility) that 88% of global CO2 emissions from fossil fuels and cement from 2016 to 2022 can be linked to just 117 producers.

75% of the emissions generated since the Paris agreement come from corporations and state entities while 25% correspond to companies owned by private investors.

A relevant fact from the study is that most fossil fuel companies totaled greater production in the seven years following the Paris Agreement (December 2015) than they had in the seven-year period prior to that date.

Specifically, 65% of state-owned companies and 55% of companies in the hands of private investors show higher production in the period 2016-2022 than in 2009-2015.

And which are the companies that have generated the most emissions in recent years, specifically since the Paris agreement? The ranking is headed by the company Saudi Aranco (accounted for 4.8% of total emissions in this seven-year period), followed by the Russian company Grazprom (3.3% of the total) and Coal India (3 %). The fourth position goes to the National Iranian Oil company (2.8%), followed by the Russian government-owned oil company Rosneft (2.1%) and the China National Petroleum Corporation or CNPC (1.7%).

And finally, Abu Dhabi National Oil Co (1.7%), ExxonMobil (1.4%), Iraq National Oil Con (1.4%) and Shell (1.2%) complete the list.

The data set managed by Carbon Majors also includes an accounting of C02 emissions thrown into the atmosphere from 1854 to 2022; These are the so-called historical emissions, which allow us to trace the responsibility for contributing to warming by looking back to the industrial revolution.

Based on this criterion and, according to this count, the data reveal that more than 70% of global CO2 emissions from fossil fuels and the cement sector generated since the industrial revolution are due to 78 corporations and state-owned producing entities. During that period, only 19 entities contributed 50% of these CO2 emissions.

In this case, the ranking is headed by the burning of coal used in China (14.0%), the emissions generated in the former Soviet Union (6.8%) and Saudi Aramco (3.6%), followed by Chevron, ExxonMobil, Gazprom, National Iranian Oil Co, BP, Shell and Coal India.

The Carbon Majors database has gained global recognition by offering a comprehensive approach to the contributions of fossil fuel producers to greenhouse gas emissions. The Carbon Majors dataset was first established in 2013 by Richard Heede.

Daan Van Acker, program director at InfluenceMap, explains that the Carbon Majors database is a key tool for attributing responsibility for climate change to fossil fuel producers, who play the most decisive role in driving climate change. global CO2 emissions.

InfluenceMap's new analysis shows that this group of companies is not slowing down production, but rather most entities are increasing it since the Paris agreement.

This investigation, as he explains, is intended to carry out an oversight task so that “these energy giants are held accountable for the consequences of their activities.”

“The Carbon Majors dataset has proven crucial in holding fossil fuel producers accountable for their climate-related impacts in academic, regulatory and legal aspects,” Van Acker says. This research includes a quantification of the contribution these entities have made to rising global surface temperatures, rising sea levels and increasing atmospheric CO2, she adds.

The report shows other important findings. Thus, the five main oil companies in the hands of private investors (Chevron, ExxonMobil, BP, Shell and ConocoPhillips) are responsible for 11.1% of historical CO2 emissions from fossil fuels and cement (196 GtCO2).

And, similarly, the top five state-owned companies (Saudi Aramco, Gazprom, National Iranian Oil Company, Coal India and Pemex) are responsible for 10.9% of historical CO2 emissions from fossil fuels and cement ( 194 GtCO2).

Likewise, it can be seen that since 2015, the supply of coal has gone from being owned by private investors to passing into the hands of state-owned entities. Emissions from coal production related to private ownership decreased by 27.9% from 2015 to 2022. However, emissions generated by states or state-owned companies grew between 2015 and 2022, with increases of 19%. % and 29%, respectively.

On the other hand, it has been proven that (after the Paris agreement) the increase in production of state-owned companies and private investment companies occurs mostly in Asia. All five Asian investor-owned companies and eight of the ten Asian state-owned entities are linked to higher emissions in the period 2016-2022 compared to the period 2009-2015. This is mainly due to rising emissions from Asian coal production.

"Carbon Majors' investigation shows us exactly who is responsible for the deadly heat, extreme weather and air pollution that is threatening lives and wreaking havoc on our oceans and forests. These companies have made billions of dollars in profits while denying the problem and delay and obstruct climate policy "deny the problem and delay and obstruct climate policy," says Tzeporah Berman, international program director at Stand.earth and chair of the Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty.

"They are spending millions on advertising campaigns to ensure they are part of a sustainable solution while continuing to invest in increased fossil fuel extraction. These findings highlight that, more than ever, we need our governments to stand up to these companies, and We need new international cooperation through a Fossil Fuel Treaty to end the expansion of fossil fuels and ensure a truly just transition," adds Berman.