Patience rewarded at Shell

Shell’s long road to a greener future appears to finally paying off, with the oil giant seeing it stock rise.

To some extent the recovery from the pandemic has pushed oil and gas prices profits, these now being $5.53bn, beating expectations and following the plunge in earnings to $638m a year ago.

And there are still questions over the speed with which the company can reduce its carbon emissions, although Shell says it will now move to the second phase of allocating capital to power its transition strategy.

Recently Shell has been ordered by a court in The Hague to intensify its efforts in a case brought by climate campaigners, and that round of legal action is unlikely to be the last to hit the big energy giants.

It may leave the company in the ironic position of needing higher oil and gas prices in order to fund the transition away from oil and gas to a greener future.

Susannah Streeter, senior investment and markets analyst, Hargreaves Lansdown commented on the results: “Patience has been the name of the game for Shell investors who have been forced to watch and wait as the energy giant has been undergoing a painful green metamorphosis while grappling with the price shock of the pandemic. That stoicism, was sorely tested, but is now being rewarded with a slap on the back of rising returns, with $2bn of share buybacks and an increase in the dividend to 24 cents a share.”

An example of thus transition ambition is the recent partnership with Waitrose in installing hundreds of electric vehicle charging points in the supermarket’s car parks. The companies announced that they are targeting the installation of 800 Shell Recharge electric vehicle charging points in up to 100 Waitrose locations across the UK by 2025. Each site is expected to have six 22kW and two 50kW rapid charging points so customers can charge their vehicles while they shop. In return companies have also reached an agreement to increase the number of Shell Select stores offering Waitrose food by a further 68 across the UK, bringing the total to at least 125 by 2025.

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