For a while now, we’ve been hearing that big oil companies have assigned an internal price on carbon in anticipation of societal response to global warming. Some companies, like Shell, have come out publicly for carbon pricing, which might seem counterintuitive to the casual observer. To wrap our arms around the oil companies’ perspective on climate change and carbon pricing, CCL had Shell Climate Advisor David Hone as our national call guest this past Saturday.
Hone said that Shell’s position on the science is that “adding carbon dioxide to the atmosphere is a real problem and … just can’t continue” and that “action on the climate is inevitable. It’s not about the science; it’s about the regulatory outlook that we’re facing.”
In response to the need to reduce emissions, Hone said, Shell supports carbon pricing. They prefer cap and trade as the most flexible but believe a carbon tax is better than nothing at all.
Why carbon pricing? Hone listed the reasons Shell and other companies would prefer this option: