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BP Says It Will Stick with Top U.S. Oil Lobby After Climate Shift

By Ron Bousso

BP, which plans to sharply cut its oil output and boost its renewable energy capacity over the next decade, said in a report that despite “uneven progress”, the API was “heading in the right direction”.

The API has faced growing pressure from member companies and activist groups to change its policies relating to climate change and drilling regulations.

The trade group started to shift some of its positions as the climate-focused Biden administration came to power this year. In March it said it supports a carbon price as one measure to mitigate climate change risk.

BP said it was “encouraged” by the API’s support for federal regulation on limiting emissions of methane, a potent greenhouse gas and its support for carbon pricing as well as improving its transparency.

“API’s progress has been uneven at times but, on the whole, the organization has moved considerably over the past year and is heading in the right direction,” BP said in the report.

“We will continue to make our case – as members – to influence API on climate and many other areas relevant to our business in the US.”

London-based BP, led by CEO Bernard Looney, last year quit the main U.S. refining lobby and two other trade groups but stuck with the API despite saying it was only “partially aligned” with its policies.

BP will publish a comprehensive review of its membership of the API and other associations next year.

France’s Total in January became the first major global energy company to quit the API due to disagreements over its climate policies and support for easing drilling rules, saying it would not renew its 2021 membership.

Total’s stance put pressure on other European oil majors that have set out strategies to sharply reduce carbon emissions.

Royal Dutch Shell also chose to extend its API membership despite “some misalignment” with its climate stance.

BP’s interim report also reviewed its participation in four other associations which were partly aligned with its policies including the Australian Institute of Petroleum and the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers.

BP said it was encouraged by progress made by all four groups over their climate stances.

(Reporting by Ron Bousso; Editing by Alexander Smith)


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