It’s no mystery that the world needs assistance (well we need help because Earth will keep on without us just fine) when it comes to reducing emissions and a climate-focused future. But while consumers are prompted to “do their part” to lower their carbon footprint a tiny part at a time (There are warning since the 70s, so..), large companies aren’t making the required changes at all.
According to the Climate Accountability Institute, a handful of oil, gas, and coal companies are responsible for 480 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide and energy-related methane pumped into Earth’s atmosphere since 1965 – that’s 35% of all greenhouse gas emissions since then.
The report also states that half of all greenhouse gas emissions in recorded history have been released into the atmosphere since 1990, with 1.35 trillion tonnes of carbon dioxide (or equivalent GHGs) emitted since 1965.
The CAI had this to say about their findings in a recent press release:
“Although global consumers from individuals to corporations are the ultimate emitters of carbon dioxide, we focus on the fossil fuel companies that, in our view, have produced and marketed the carbon fuels to billions of consumers with the knowledge that their use as intended will worsen the climate crisis.”
So, here are the 2o companies worldwide that account for over 30% of the world’s greenhouse emissions.
20. Saudi Aramco (Saudi Arabia) — 4.38 percent
19. Chevron (USA) — 3.2 percent
18. Gazprom (Russia) — 3.19 percent
17. ExxonMobile (USA) — 3.09 percent
16. National Iranian Oil Co. (Iran) — 2.63 percent
15. BP (UK) — 2.51 percent
14. Royal Dutch Shell (The Netherlands) — 2.36 percent
13. Coal India (India) — 1.71 percent
12. Pemex (Mexico) — 1.67 percent
11. Petroleos de Venezuela (Venezuela) — 1.16 percent
10. PetroChina/China Natl Petroleum (China) — 1.15 percent
9. Peabody Energy (USA) — 1.14 percent
8. ConocoPhillips (USA) — 1.12 percent
7. Abu Dhabi (UAE) — 1.01 percent
6. Kuwait Petroleum Corp (Kuwait) — 1 percent
5. Iraq National Oil Co. (Iraq) — 0.93 percent
4. Total SA (France) — 0.91 percent
3. Sonatrach (Algeria) — 0.91 percent
2. BHP Billiton (Australia) — 0.72 percent
1. Petrobras (Brazil) — 0.64 percent
The report says that these gross offenders and others like them have “a significant moral, financial, and legal responsibility to help curtail and compensate for the runaway effects of climate change.”
These companies will have to make some big changes if we hope to meet the goals set by the Paris Climate Change Agreement in 2017.