Norwegian player Equinor has become the latest oil major to quit a trade body over disagreements related to climate policies, as it moved to exit the Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA).
The oil and gas giant reviewed all its trade memberships, delivering on a pledge made last year to the Climate Action 100+ group of investors to ensure its membership in relevant industry associations does not “undermine the ambitions of the Paris agreement”.
Equinor said that “IPAA's lack of position on climate leaves the association materially misaligned with Equinor’s climate policy and advocacy position”.
“Equinor has assessed our membership and decided not to remain a member of IPAA from 2020,” the company said.
The company also highlighted “some misalignment” with the American Petroleum Institute (API) and the Australian Petroleum Production & Exploration Association (APPEA) and pledged to try and influence both organisations to take a more progressive stance on climate policy issues.
“Our assessment of API's climate position and climate policy principles shows some misalignment with Equinor's position. We have, however, observed a positive shift over recent years reducing the gap,” the company said.
“Based on our dialogue with API's leadership we expect further progress. API is actively developing their climate policy position… Equinor will remain a member of this organisation and engage in further developing API's climate position.”
Similarly, the company said it would use its membership of APPEA to encourage it to progress its climate change policy principles in Australia.
“We will also encourage APPEA to take a clear stand on supporting carbon pricing in Australia and not supporting carryover of credits from the Kyoto protocol to the Paris agreement," it said.
The review is the latest in a series of trade body audits from leading oil majors.
Last month, BP dropped out of three US-based organisations following an in-depth review examining the alignment of their climate-related policies.
BP, which has pledged to become a net zero emissions company by 2050 or sooner, said it will leave the American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM), the Western States Petroleum Association (WSPA) and the Western Energy Alliance (WEA).
The supermajor also identified a further five organisations with which it is only partially aligned on climate, including API, the Australian Institute of Petroleum (AIP) and the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP).
The company communicated these differences to these associations, it said, adding that it has also informed the trade bodies its “clear expectations with regards to climate positions and transparency”.