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Shell to offset carbon emissions for British fuel buyers

Thu, 10th Oct 2019 00:01

LONDON, Oct 10 (Reuters) - Royal Dutch Shell said
on Thursday it would offset the carbon dioxide emissions of
around 1.5 million road users in Britain starting later this
month under a loyalty scheme.

Shell, like other oil companies, has come under pressure
from shareholders to show how it plans to reduce its carbon
footprint and help cut greenhouse gas emissions, a major cause
of global warming.

Britons are increasingly concerned about their environmental
impact, with thousands of students striking earlier this year
and green group Extinction Rebellion carrying out civil
disobedience to push for more ambition on climate change.

Sinead Lynch, Shell UK country chair, said the best way for
people to cut their road emissions was to use electric vehicles,
supplied with renewable power.

"But today the majority of people still use petrol and
diesel. We can help them address the impact of their emissions
by offsetting their fuel purchases," she said in a statement.

From Oct. 17, emissions relating to fuel purchased by
customers with the Shell Go+ app or card will be offset for free
until September 2020.

Shell said about 20% of its customers were registered with
the loyalty scheme. It expects the programme to cost roughly 10
million pounds ($12.2 million) and offset emissions from around
1.5 million cars.

Carbon offsetting involves helping to fund a cut in
emissions elsewhere, such as through preventing deforestation.

Some climate groups say offsetting should be used as a last
resort and that absolute emission cuts should be the priority.

Shell said it would use carbon credits from conservation
projects in Peru, Indonesia, the United States and Britain.

Most of the credits that will be used for the scheme have
already been bought, Shell said, but it did not disclose the
purchase price.

The cost of carbon offsets varies widely depending on the
type of project and the social and environmental benefits it
brings.

Credits traded under a U.N.-backed scheme are trading at
around 0.22 euro per tonne of carbon dioxide, while
carbon-offsetting firms can charge around 8 euros a tonne.
($1 = 0.8185 pounds)
(Reporting by Susanna Twidale; Editing by Dale Hudson)

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