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Shell to seek shareholder backing for energy transition strategy

Highlights

Shareholder advisory vote will not be binding

Energy major is targeting a net-zero business by 2050

Shell to update its transition strategy every three years

London — Shell will ask its shareholders to support its carbon reduction and energy transition strategy next month, marking the first time an oil major has presented its transition plans to shareholders, the company said April 15.

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The decision to seek an advisory vote on its transition strategy was first announced in February when the energy major laid out details of plans to further grow its renewables and power business.

"As we transform our business, it is more important than ever for shareholders to understand and support our approach," CEO Ben van Beurden said in a statement. "We are asking our shareholders to vote for an energy transition strategy that is designed to bring our energy products, our services, and our investments in line with the goal of the Paris Agreement and the global drive to combat climate change."

Shell said its shareholders will vote on a new Energy Transition Strategy publication which sets out the company's target to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050.

The vote is purely advisory and will not be binding, Shell said, noting that its board and executive committee will remain responsible for setting and approving Shell's energy transition strategy.

One of the first international oil and gas companies to set targets for reducing the net carbon footprint of its energy products, Shell has deepened its carbon emissions targets in the last year as pressure mounts on oil majors to help mitigate climate change.

Using 2016 as a baseline, Shell plans to reduce the net carbon intensity of the energy products it sells by 6%-8% by 2023, 20% by 2030 and 45% by 2035, before reaching 100% in 2050. The company also aims to double its annual electricity sales by 2030, to 560 TWh, and have 15 million retail and business customers.

The company said it plans to publish an update to its Energy Transition Strategy every three years until 2050 with an advisory vote every year on its progress toward its plans and targets.

Shell's annual general meeting is scheduled to be held on May 18, 2021.