In 2018, when ExxonMobil announced its intention to reduce its methane emissions and gas-burning, many welcomed and celebrated the news. Despite these initial claims, the company’s internal documents paint a different picture. Newly leaked documents reveal that Exxon actually plans to increase its carbon production by 17% by the year 2025. This increase would be equivalent to the total annual emissions of Greece.
Historically, Exxon has thrived on poor climate policies, ignored calls to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions and never made a substantial commitment to reduce its oil and gas production. If the leaked documents are anything to go by, Exxon plans to continue this trend by following through with a 2018 plan to increase carbon output. As part of this plan, the company expects to create an extra 23 million U.S tons of CO2.
The extra emissions will come from the company’s increased gas and oil production. According to the leaked documents, Exxon intends to implement a seven-year plan, in which an investment of $210 billion will result in additional 1 million barrels of oil each day. While the company plans to introduce some renewables and reduce methane, it demonstrates no clear, proven plan to achieve these ambitious goals. Additionally, Exxon’s plans to capture carbon and store it underground rely on unproven technology.
Without concrete reduction measures, Exxon’s direct emissions would increase by 21 million tons. This means that the company would be emitting 26% more carbon by 2025 as compared to their 2017 emissions. More interesting is the fact that estimates in the leaked report don’t account for emissions produced as a result of customers using the company’s products. About 90% of the pollution caused by large gas and oil companies comes from the emissions released by final product users such as motorists and other gas users.
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