A climate activist group, Follow This, along with a group of investors with $1.1 trillion in assets, has filed a resolution for TotalEnergies’ May 26 annual general meeting, urging the company’s shareholders to adopt more ambitious targets for emissions cuts. 

Similar resolutions have been filed for upcoming shareholder meetings at rival energy majors BP, Chevron, Exxon Mobil, and Shell. The investors represent 1.5% of TotalEnergies’ shares.

Follow This is asking companies to commit to absolute emissions cuts by 2030, rather than intensity-based targets, including Scope 3 emissions from the combustion of the fuels they sell. 

“To achieve the goal of (the) Paris (climate deal), the world has to almost halve emissions by 2030, but TotalEnergies has no plan to drive down emissions this decade,” Follow This founder Mark van Baal said.

The world needs to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 43% from 2019 levels by 2030 to have any hope of meeting the Paris Agreement goal of keeping warming below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.

BP and Shell have recommended shareholders vote against the Follow This resolutions. In 2020, Follow This received 17% of the votes in a TotalEnergies shareholder vote on a similar resolution. 

TotalEnergies’ climate strategy was approved by about 90% of shareholder votes in 2021 and 2022, while Follow This resolutions at other oil majors last year received between 15% and 33% of the votes.

Mark van Baal believes that these climate resolutions will show which investors are serious about resolving the climate crisis and which ones just talk about it. 

“These climate resolutions at Big Oil will show which investors are serious about resolving the climate crisis and which prefer to just talk about it,” he said.


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