An energy transition loophole is allowing Big Oil to offload high-polluting assets to private buyers

Oil and gas mergers and acquisitions are not helpful to reduce greenhouse gases. Flaring and emissions commitments disappear if tens of thousands of wells pass from public companies to private firms that do not have any oversight or reporting requirements to investors.

Big oil companies sell off their dirty assets to private firms. This means that the big oil companies are now working together with private firms to make sure that we do not reach a point where we have a catastrophic climate change.

Oil and gas companies should be pressured by governments to set short and medium term targets in line with the Paris agreement. This will help them reduce carbon emissions and prepare for the future.

Oil and gas companies are not helping to fight climate change. Their business practices are causing more pollution than ever before. These companies need to stop polluting our air, water, and soil. We must take action now to protect our environment.

EDF’s analysis of over 3 000 deals between 2017 and 2021 show how flaring and emissions commitment disappears when tens of thousands of well are passed from publicly traded company to private firm that have no oversight or report requirement to shareholders. These same obscure private companies tend to disclosure little about their operations and commit to ramping up fossil fuels production.

These deals are growing in both numbers and scale, and they’re going up by billions each year. This means that the world isn’t doing anything about climate change. Pollution is simply being shifted to other countries where there are less rules and regulations.

Regardless of the sellers’ intent the result is that millions tons of emissions effectively disappear into thin air. These wells and other assets age without supervision. As these wells and other assets become older, the environmental challenges only grow worse.

Net zero financing means that companies must pay back any money they borrow. This could mean that big banks may be forced to stop lending to fossil fuel companies.


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