Over the last decade, we have seen a variety of climate-related commitments from companies in Canada’s oil and gas sector.
While at first these commitments seem promising, a second look reveals a less-than-rosy picture of the role of Canadian oil and gas companies in relation to Canada’s climate targets, regulations and the road map to net zero. The most important work any company could do right now is commit to — then get to work on — reducing emissions in absolute terms. However, there are other important ways the oilpatch impacts climate action on a national and global scale. One of these is the extent to which its government relations, or “lobbying” activities, do or do not align with the climate actions Canada must undertake to prevent the worst impacts of climate change from wreaking havoc on our planet.
Today, we are excited to share Pulling Back the Curtain, the latest iteration of SHARE’s research on climate lobbying in the oil and gas sector.
In 2020, SHARE published its first climate lobbying benchmark, assessing and ranking 22 Canadian companies listed in the TSX Capped Energy Index based on the quality of their lobbying disclosure. Our second climate lobbying benchmark builds on the methodology and objectives of the 2020 benchmark, providing an updated and more detailed analysis of 13 select companies.
Pulling back the curtain
The impact of corporate lobbying on Canadian oil and gas climate commitments
“Pulling back the curtain,” September 2022. Our second climate lobbying benchmark builds on the 2020 benchmark, providing an updated analysis of 13 companies listed in the TSX Capped Energy Index.View PDF
Our latest findings show that, while companies have made progress to address some disclosure gaps by providing often high-level information on their lobbying priorities and strategies, all companies fail to demonstrate how their association memberships align with Paris Agreement goals.
The intervention of governments and regulators is needed to meaningfully reduce greenhouse gas emissions
Climate-concerned Investors want and need to understand how companies position themselves on climate issues, especially in relation to the Paris Agreement. A pathway, inclusive of lobbying activity, that is consistent with a 1.5°C limit to global temperature rise is only possible if the private sector — especially actors that contribute the most to global warming, namely oil and gas companies — redirect their lobbying efforts to actively support aggressive government action to stop the worst impacts of climate change.