The total potential CO2 emissions from the total reserves of the world’s 200 largest publicly traded coal, oil, and gas reserve-owning companies now sits at over 460% of their carbon budget.
This is the primary conclusion from the third annual report from the Fossil Fuel Index, or FFI, a provider of financial research and products for investors looking for information on how to understand, measure, and act on climate risks. The report analyzes the previous year’s changes to what is known as The Carbon Underground 200TM (CU200), FFI’s list of the top publicly traded coal, oil, and gas-reserve-owning companies, ranked by their potential carbon emissions.
The results from the new report reveal that the CU200 companies currently own fossil fuel reserves equating to 474 Gt of potential CO2 emissions.
This number is actually a decrease on the February 2015 number of 555 Gt, but the decrease is nowhere near enough, considering that the remaining 474 Gt sees the potential future reserve-based emissions from these 200 companies remain over 460% of their allocated carbon budget through to the year 2050.
The report also highlighted the correlating revelation that investor activity motivated by monitoring the financial risks of climate change is increasing, resulting in numerous and increasing actions in the areas of divestment and shareholder engagement.
“As more investors assess the impacts of a transition to a low-carbon economy, divestment, engagement, risk management, and active portfolio management will all be viewed as appropriate and even complementary responses to climate risk,” said Christopher Ito, FFI CEO and report co-author.
The report also lists the top 10 oil & gas companies and the top 10 coal companies: