The proposal from the WWF and Greenpeace of the WWF that Equinor should cut its emissions in line with the 1.5-degree target was voted on at this evening’s Equinor general meeting.
The state, which owns 67 percent of the shares, voted against the proposal despite the fact that the proposal was in line with the requirements set out in the ownership notice.
However, in a protocol appendix to the proposal, the NFD wrote that it expects Equinor’s board of directors to follow through on expectations set out in the proprietary notice that companies will implement targets and measures in line with the Paris Agreement for both indirect and direct emissions. The state will follow up on expectations in the ownership dialogue with the company and the board of directors.
Ragnhild Elisabeth Waagaard, WWF’s Climate and Energy Team Leader, says the following:
– Equinor’s board of directors has recommended that shareholders vote against an offer in line with the proprietary notice, indicating that Equinor is not willing to follow government instructions. At the same time, the NFD endorsed our proposal in submitting its protocol and specified that it would follow up on the proposal in the owner’s dialogue with the company. This is as far as the state can go without expressing no confidence in Equinor’s board of directors. Now we expect the company to set goals and take measures to reduce global warming to 1.5 degrees. This means that there is no scope for developing new oil and gas fields.
Greenpeace political advisor Halvard Raavand says:
– Ironically, Equinor points to a lack of political ambition in its justification for rejecting the shareholder proposal, while our proposal simply required them to follow the new SOE policy guidelines. However, we note the state’s provision of protocol, and we now expect the state to call Equinor to a meeting to make it clear that the political ambition is for Equinor to operate in line with the Paris Agreement.
Environmental activists from around the world demonstrated at the public meeting
Equinor plans to carry out a number of controversial developments and exploration activities in Brazil, Argentina, Canada and the United Kingdom. At this year’s public meeting, many local activists from countries that will be affected by the new projects are present. The General Assembly has heard about how Equinor’s activities are destroying local nature and fisheries in highly vulnerable landscapes. In many countries, indigenous peoples are particularly affected, including Argentina and Canada. In addition, both young adults and grandparents are represented.
Equinor’s activities affect vulnerable groups around the world. Here they have traveled to the General Assembly to tell us how these irresponsible projects will destroy the living conditions of local people, threaten biodiversity and exacerbate the climate crisis. As the major shareholder of Equinor, the Norwegian government has a responsibility to ensure that Norway does not contribute to environmentally harmful activity in other countries, and must stop such projects immediately, says Greenpeace political advisor Halvard Ravand.
Many investors are concerned about the lack of adaptability
Earlier this year, 18 of Equinor’s major shareholders sent a letter to Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Storr expressing concern about the company’s lack of plans to reach the 1.5° target. Contributors behind the letter included Storebrand, KLP, Danske Bank, and a number of international investors.
— It’s a clear nod to Equinor when a lot of the big shareholders come out and criticize the company’s lack of adaptability. The country, as the main shareholder, needs to take responsibility and ensure that Equinor’s activities are in line with the Paris Agreement, and that the company begins a comprehensive transition away from fossil fuels and toward renewables, says Ragnhild Elisabeth Waagaard, head of the climate and energy team at WWF. .
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