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Shell Slips as Profit Falls Short Amid Ambitious CO2-Reduction Aim

By Dhirendra Tripathi – Royal Dutch Shell (NYSE:RDSa) ADRs traded 4.3% lower in Thursday’s premarket after the oil and gas major reported third-quarter sales and profit that fell short of expectations.

It also set aggressive targets to cut its carbon footprint though more was possible, raising the specter of higher spending on greener technologies and processes.

The company’s third-quarter profit more than quadrupled to $4.13 billion on revenue of $60.04 billion. The company is in the throes of tackling active investor Third Point’s (NYSE:SPNT) demand that the company split its legacy and renewables businesses into two. The company’s first reaction has been cold to the idea.

Shell took a hit of around $400 million on its adjusted earnings due to the damage caused by Hurricane Ida. It had flagged a hit to earnings earlier this month due to the hurricane that shut its operations for at least a fortnight in the Gulf of Mexico in August.

Shell aims to halve its direct emissions by 2030 in absolute terms, compared with 2016 levels, a more aggressive approach than its previous targets. The new goal covers Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions, which are directly under Shell’s operational control.

While ambitious, it still leaves out Scope 3 emissions caused by users of Shell products. The company has pledged to become a net-zero emissions company by 2050.


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