BP’s plans to become a net-zero company by 2050 mark a complete “turnaround” on the company’s position, an analyst has said.
As part of that ambition, the oil giant has for the first time committed to addressing the environmental impact of the use of its products by customers, known as “scope three”.
It is the first big move from new chief executive Bernard Looney, who took the helm last week.
His predecessor, Bob Dudley, had rejected calls to follow in the footsteps of Shell and tackle scope three.
Luke Parker, vice president of corporate analysis at Wood Mackenzie, said: “BP joins Shell, Total, Equinor and Repsol in making a major commitment to reduce its net carbon footprint.
“This marks a major turnaround in BP’s position. Just 12 months ago former CEO Bob Dudley said the company could not be held accountable for how people use its products. Looney is taking the company in a very different direction.”
Parker added: “It’s an ambition, rather than a target, but the commitment appears to be unconditional. In terms of scale of commitment, this puts BP towards the top of the pack, along with Repsol and Equinor.
“This will see BP’s business completely transformed over the coming decades: renewables and carbon abatement will get very big, legacy oil and gas will eventually get smaller. But the transition to 2050 is a multi-decade transition – not something that will happen in the next year or so.”
Stuart Lamont, investment manager at Brewin Dolphin Aberdeen, said: “The market has reacted positively to today’s announcement from BP and its shares have risen just under 1% with news of the strategy.
“This is in keeping with the wider transition from big oil to big energy and the oil & gas sector demonstrating its commitment to decarbonisation.
“While the statement provides a positive direction of travel, investors and analysts will be looking to the capital markets day in September for further details.”