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Hans Bouman

Shell’s climate change debacle on social media


By John Donovan

As is plain from recently published news articles, Shell’s use of social media to initiate a discussion about climate change has spectacularly backfired.

The fall out is not limited to Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.

This morning, I spotted the following postings on by Shell’s Climate Change VP John MacArthur

John MacArthur• 3rd+Climate & Sustainability Leader ★ Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering ★ Chairman OGCI Climate Investments ★ Executive Coach1 day ago Even though the world is going through uncertain times, we know there is an urgent need to tackle climate change. That’s why, at Shell, our ambition is to be a net-zero emissions energy business by 2050, or sooner. We aim to meet our customers’ demand for cleaner energy, keeping in pace with society. #MakeTheFuture#climatechange#netzero2050


So Shell will get out of the primary energy business? Please explain how the world will solve the energy needs over the next 30 years. Eliminating about 12000 mtoe to zero in about 12000 days means 1 nuclear installation per day or 1500 windmills. We need to stop burning fossil and save it for useful stuff. But to reorganise the world in 10 or 30 years just is not possible. With a concerted effort by the world leaders (when was the last time this was achieved?) it will take 2-3 generations and great care is to be taken not to send the poorest 30% of the population into even more dire circumstances. Fortunately we have the time as there is sufficient fossil fuel around. In the meantime I vote your statement as a greenwashing marketing one. But I wish you a fine day and look forward to your explanation!

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