1. Which Shell lubricants brands does this announcement cover?
This announcement covers the following premium synthetic lubricants:
– Shell Helix Ultra 0W in Europe, Asia-Pacific (including China) and the Middle East;
– Shell Helix Ultra 5W in China Pennzoil Platinum 0W, Pennzoil Platinum High Mileage 0W, and Pennzoil Ultra Platinum 0W products in the United States and Canada
– Shell Rimula: R5/R6/Ultra/K series products in Egypt, India, Indonesia and Korea
– Shell Rotella: T5/T6 in the United States and CanadaB2B industry lubricants – a wide range of B2B premium products, including lubricants and greases used in the wind sector, Shell’s range of eco-Label products “Shell Naturelle”, and a variety of other premium products for industrial applications.  

2: Shell claims that it will compensate for 700,000T CO2e emissions per year across the products’ lifecycle. How did Shell calculate this figure?  

Shell calculates the CO2e emissions associated with Carbon Neutral lubricants across all stages of the product life cycle, an approach referred to as “cradle-to-grave”. This includes raw material acquisition (e.g. base oil and additives), production, packaging, transportation, usage and end-of-life treatment. CO2, CH4, N2O emissions are jointly referred to as “CO2 equivalent” (CO2e) emissions. The calculations have been performed in accordance with international standards and the underlying model, as well as the associated processes have been subjected to review by an independent, 3rd party verification body. Compensation for 700,000 tonnes is a function of the calculated CO2 intensity for each product and how much lubricants business we are planning to achieve over the next 12 months.  

3. Shell claims that compensating for 700,000T CO2e emissions per year is the equivalent of taking approximately 340,000 cars off the road for 1 year. How did Shell calculate this figure?

This analogy is for illustrative purposes only to help to demonstrate the impact of selecting Carbon Neutral lubricants to our customers. In this particular example, we calculated CO2e intensity of a medium size diesel car and its annual distance driven in the EU (11,879 km). The actual emissions from driving are sensitive to parameters such as the type of the car, its age, driving style, load of the car, city vs. highway driving and will therefore vary for each individual application. As such, these numbers should not be taken as representative of any specific case or activity. Driving analogies are based on direct CO2, CH4 and N2O emissions from the vehicles and do not include emissions from fuel production and distribution (life cycle emissions). Fuel emissions factors are from UK DEFRA (2019), driving distances are from Google Maps (2020), and US and EU driver distances are from US DOT (2018) and EU ODYSSEE-MURE (2017).  

4. In what countries will Shell introduce these carbon neutral lubricants?  

Shell will be launching these carbon neutral lubricants in all European markets, the UK, Russia, the US, Canada, China, South Korea, India, Indonesia and Egypt. This is not the end though, as Shell’s intention is to continue to roll out its carbon neutral offer around the world.   

5. How much does offsetting cost and is Shell passing that cost on to the customer?
Shell calculates the amount of CO2e emissions generated and will purchase carbon credits to compensate these emissions. The cost is absorbed by Shell and is subject to pricing policies in different markets. For the latest pricing information please contact a local Shell sales representative. 

6. Why isn’t Shell doing more to reduce CO2e emissions rather than simply offsetting them?

There are many ways that Shell Lubricants avoids and reduces CO2 during manufacturing and transportation of its products. For example, over 50% of the electricity in Shell Lubricant blending plants now comes from certified renewable sources. In total, we have taken out over 34,000 tonnes CO2e emissions from our own operations, reducing our manufacturing carbon intensity by over 30% since 2016(1). We also aim to design products to reduce CO2e emissions in our value chain and with the customer, such as our specialised lubricants for hybrid vehicles as well as E-Fluids that help electric vehicles perform better and more efficiently.   While avoid and reduce measures are the leading means to help tackle emissions, until scalable solutions are deployed, carbon offsetting programmes provide an immediate solution to reduce CO2e impact of our products.  

7. Is this just greenwashing by Shell?  

No. We have carefully listened to our critics, supporters and shareholders. We have heard what they expect from us as a company, and a leading manufacturer, and we have made the necessary changes to ensure we are contributing positively back to the environment.   Carbon emissions is a complex challenge with many contributing factors. This is why the response will need to be as equally multi-faceted, requiring every stakeholder to do its part in developing cleaner ways of working.  

8. What are nature-based solutions?
‘Nature-based solutions’ – also referred to as natural climate solutions – comprise all activities related to the protection, or re-development, of natural ecosystems such as forests, grasslands and wetland systems to lower concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. This can include avoiding or minimising greenhouse gas emissions and helping to sequester carbon into so-called ‘carbon sinks’. Each of these activities results in the biological capture and storage of carbon – typically through the process of photosynthesis. Such activities can lead to the marketing, trading and sale of carbon offset credits. They also help, for instance, to offer alternative sources of income to local communities, improve soil productivity, clean air and water, and maintain biodiversity.  

9. What are carbon credits?  

A carbon credit represents the avoidance or removal of greenhouse gases equivalent to 1 tonne of carbon dioxide. These credits are traded among governments and businesses. In order to ensure the quality and integrity of carbon credits, there is a robust programme of third-party standards, verification processes and registries.  

10. How does Shell verify the nature-based solutions projects it is involved with around the world?  

To help ensure the projects in which we invest have high levels of quality and integrity, we have developed a bespoke screening process: We only select projects that are certified under credible, high-quality and independent carbon credit standards. We select projects that deliver wider environmental and social benefits. We work to ensure project developers maintain appropriate health, safety, security and social governance standards. Our internal nature-based project screening review and management processes are audited by an independent third-party   Footnotes: [1] Own operations involved in manufacturing of lubricants and based on Shell Internal Reporting.

1Own operations involved in manufacturing of lubricants and based on Shell Internal Reporting.