World biggest 250 companies responsible for one third of all greenhouse emissions, finds report

Only about 30 per cent of the biggest firms have set strong goals to curb carbon dioxide emissions, Thomson Reuters found

Alister Doyle
Tuesday 31 October 2017 16:58
Comments
The coal-fired Plant Scherer, one of America's top carbon dioxide emitters
The coal-fired Plant Scherer, one of America's top carbon dioxide emitters

The world’s 250 biggest listed companies account for a third of all man-made greenhouse gas emissions yet few have strong goals to limit rising temperatures, a study showed on Tuesday.

Coal India, Gazprom and Exxon Mobil topped the list when measuring carbon dioxide emitted by companies and by consumers using their products, it said.

“Without continual reduction in emissions from this group of companies, effectively mitigating the long-term risks of climate change is not possible,” according to the study, a Thomson Reuters Financial & Risk white paper.

In the past three years, emissions from the group of 250 had been flat “when they should have been going down by roughly three percent per year” to limit temperatures in line with goals set by the 2015 Paris climate agreement, it said.

The report, written in collaboration with Constellation Research & Technology, emissions tracking group CDP and BSD Consulting, found the group emitted a third of world carbon emissions and that only about 30 per cent of the 250 firms had set strong goals to curb them.

Under the 2015 Paris Agreement, almost 200 nations promised to curb emissions to limit more heat waves, downpours and rising sea levels and said they would work to involve the private sector.

US President Donald Trump, who doubts human activities are the main driver of climate change, plans to pull out.

David Lubin, a co-author of the report at Constellation Research & Technology, told Reuters: “250 CEOs - that’s a relatively small auditorium if you can bring together the leaders who really have a significant impact on the fate of the planet.”

Tim Nixon, a co-author at Thomson Reuters, said the study found “no evidence” that companies adopting stronger policies to reduce their carbon emissions paid a penalty in terms of shareholder returns, profits or employment.

And case studies of companies including Xcel Energy, Ingersoll Rand and Total, which have acted strongly to curb emissions, showed there may even be a significant benefit to action, he said.

Almost 200 nations will meet in Bonn, Germany, next week to work on a detailed “rule book” for the Paris Agreement and ways to bolster the pact after Trump’s planned withdrawal.

Reuters

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in