Total, one of the five global “super majors”, is preparing to change its name to Total Energies to represent its diversity, but in the face of growing pressure, it is struggling to convince investors that it will do enough for the climate.
The oil and gas giant, which now also invests in wind and solar power, is holding its annual general meeting on Friday the 28th.
Shareholders will have to vote on a very symbolic resolution: the change of identity of the company, founded in 1924 under the name of Compagnie Franైois des Patrols, as Total Energies.
“The group affirms its desire to transform itself into a multi-energy entity to meet the double challenge of energy transformation: high energy, low emissions,” explained CEO Patrick Powan, whose mandate must also be renewed. Three years at GA.
Like its European counterparts, and unlike the American giants, it is thriving on total reproducibility and wants to accelerate. In 2021, the company will allocate more than 20% of its net investment for renewables and electricity.
The group is under increasing pressure from conservationists and now investors to work harder to tackle climate change.
The International Energy Agency (IEA) has asked the world to “forget” any new oil or gas exploration project “now” to curb global warming.
The Board of Total Board of Directors, which is anxious to show that it is not passive on these issues, is presenting a climate resolution this year.
Last year, eleven investors (La Banque Postal Asset Management, Credit Mutual, MySchert, etc.) proposed a resolution to force Total to pursue more ambitious climate goals.
Struggling with management, it was rejected by shareholders, but still garnered 16.8% of positive votes.
At the shell, the resolution in favor of more ambitious goals – and did not support management – received only 30% of the vote.
New project in Uganda
At this point, Total 2050 is moving forward by promoting 2030 goals on the path to carbon neutrality.
The so-called “Scope 3” perimeter is totally committed to the energy products used by its customers (such as gasoline burned in cars), for example, to ensure that emissions worldwide fall by 2030 to 2015.
Criticizing the management’s decision, the NGO condemned Greenpeace and Reclaim Finance’s “diversion strategy” and “the total effort made to counter shareholders’ decision on the environment.”
Lucy Pinson, founder of Reclaim Finance, was quoted as saying, “We are not at the forefront of a transformation,” quoting his new hydrocarbon production projects.
Overall, for example, recently signed contracts for a large oil project in Uganda. It has re-launched a major gas project in Papua.
She also describes poorly described objectives and resources: “It is not only dangerous for the environment, it is also dangerous for the shareholders’ portfolio because they cannot predict the risks associated with their investments”.
Many investors – light in capital but influential in some – have also announced that they will vote against or abstain from the resolution they have passed: OFI Asset Management and Management Company MySchert AM, asked to stop exploring new oil and gas fields.
“I think we still have a lot of stakeholders to accept the essence of this matter and to target the margins of progress that are still needed to come to terms with the Paris Agreements,” SRI Director of Research Judge é Reilly Boudouin told Mischert AM.
Credit Mutuel chose abstinence as “what is needed for the future”, with the goal of “reducing oil production and halting exploration activities for new oil fields.”