Oil industry giant Shell has moved away from carbon offsets, amid indications that they are not effective to fight global warming.
Shell has become the most recent major corporation to withdraw from carbon offsets, citing concerns about their limited environmental impact. This development comes as prominent environmental certification scheme Carbon Trust discontinues its “carbon neutral” labelling scheme, which relied on offsetting.
The FTSE 100 oil company, a prominent advocate of carbon offsetting, officially abandoned its goals of investing up to $100 million annually in carbon credit initiatives and acquiring 120 million nature offsets annually by 2030.
This decision aligns Shell with other companies such as Gucci, Leon, Nestlé, and others, all of which have been distancing themselves from offsetting in response to mounting evidence that a significant portion of carbon credits fails to effectively address global warming. Earlier this year, reports revealed the ineffectiveness of a vast number of rainforest carbon offsets.
Shell has asserted its ongoing support for carbon credits and has expressed its enthusiasm for efforts aimed at enhancing their quality.
The Carbon Trust has also ceased its “carbon neutral” labelling initiative based on offsets. A representative of the trust acknowledged that consumers may have unintentionally been misled by the label due to the subpar quality of the offsets.
When contacted by the Guardian, a spokesperson for Shell said: “Shell’s position on carbon credits, including from nature-based solutions, remains unchanged. Carbon credits remain a valuable and additional decarbonisation lever in our portfolio, including from nature-based solutions.
“The carbon market may not be perfectly functioning everywhere yet, however there are ongoing discussions of how it can be improved which we welcome; that is how markets progress.”
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