Wael Sawan, the chief executive officer of UK-based oil major Shell, has reinforced his company’s commitment to becoming a net-zero business by 2050, but says that the way it will get there has changed.
Sawan took over from former CEO Ben van Beurden at the start of this year. Since then, he has steered the company’s investment back towards the traditional oil and gas business, something that many oil majors have done since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine exposed major weaknesses in the global energy market.
Through a video link to the Energy Intelligence Forum that recently took place in London, Sawan explained why he had decided to divest some of the company’s low-carbon assets
“For avoidance of doubt, what hasn’t changed is the destination that we have set for ourselves. What has changed is the pathway we’re going to get there…we’ve had to make some tough choices [that influence] which renewable projects we will pursue and which we will not.”
He also said that shareholders seem to approve of the new strategy and the balance the company has struck, with the feedback being extremely positive. He did concede, however, that the shift in priorities had raised questions within the company, especially among those most affected by it.
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