Oil major Royal Dutch Shell has outlined a scenario in which, by 2070, the world would be using far less of the company’s own product, oil, as cars become electric, a massive carbon storage industry develops, and transportation begins a shift toward a reliance on hydrogen as an energy carrier.
The company’s Sky scenario was designed to imagine a world that complies with the goals of the United Nations sponsored Paris Agreement on climate change, managing to hold the planet’s warming to “well below” a rise of two degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels.
Shell has said that it supports the Paris Agreement.
The scenario, which finds the world in a net-zero emissions state by 2070, is based on the idea that “a simple extension of current efforts, whether efficiency mandates, modest carbon taxes, or renewable energy supports, is insufficient for the scale of change required,” the oil company document reads.
“The relevant transformations in the energy and natural systems require concurrent climate policy action and the deployment of disruptive new technologies at mass scale within government policy environments that strongly incentivise investment and innovation.”
The plan would shift people away from oil and towards hydrogen and electric transportation in order to keep global warming under the 2.0°C limit that most scientists think is the tipping point for climate change.
As weird as it is for an oil company to suggest moving away from fossil fuels, Shell is putting its money where its mouth is.
Last October, the company purchased an electric car charging company, a major natural gas company, and it’s working on carbon capture and storage technology through its Quest and Gorgon projects.
The company also cautioned that Sky is only a scenario, a possible future dependent on many assumptions, not a reality that will definitely be realized.
Shell is one of the globe’s largest publicly traded oil companies and produced 3.7 million barrels of oil equivalent per day last year.
Shell’s Sky scenario details a way in which the world can shift from oil to other technologies by 2070.
The proposal suggests addressing growing global energy needs by moving to clean electricity like solar and wind, replacing petrol vehicles with electric vehicles, particularly semi-trucks such as that being developed by Tesla, and focusing on fuels like biofuel and hydrogen.
“The relevant transformations in the energy and natural systems require concurrent climate policy action and the deployment of disruptive new technologies at mass scale within government policy environments that strongly incentivize investment and innovation,” the company said.
Royal Dutch Shell chief executive Ben van Beurden in past interviews with The Washington Post newspaper has acknowledged that “climate change is real” and that “action is needed” but has asserted that the world will need to keep burning fossil fuels even if renewable energy catapults forward.
Extracted from Eco News