Shell Safety Consultant Stops Climate Change with Viral Message

Shell officially renamed on Friday, abandoning the “Royal Dutch” that has been part of its identity since 1907.

Rick Will King | Reuters

At 8:27 am on Monday, May 23, Caroline Dennett sent an email to 1,400 executives of the oil and gas conglomerate. shellAnnounces her resignation after working as a safety consultant for 11 years.

Dennett, based near London, asks Shell’s management and management whether they really believe that the vision of looking in the mirror and increasing oil and gas mining will secure a safe future for humanity. I asked for it. “

Dennett later posted a screenshot of his resignation email, a 1 minute 12 second video explaining his decision by speaking directly to the camera, and a written description of his decision. Professional networking site LinkedIn..

Since then, her LinkedIn post has received about 10,000 responses and over 800 comments, some in favor of Dennett and some in favor of Shell.

Her market research business, InfluenceStarted working with Shell in 2011 after BP’s 2010 Gulf of Mexico Crude Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico refocused on safety measures across the oil and gas industry. She began designing, piloting, and managing worker surveys and understood how rigorous safety precautions were taken. Using the information gathered, Dennett suggests ways to improve the culture surrounding worker safety.

Dennett did not make the decision to lightly stop trading with Shell.

Dennett told CNBC on Tuesday. “You don’t make such a decision in such a hurry. That’s something you have to consider.”

But in the end, she observes between the company’s attention to the safety concerns of individual workers in the field and the fundamental danger of extracting oil and gas and continuing to burn it for energy. She says she couldn’t continue working at Shell because of the contradictions she had made.

Shell’s internal safety program is called “Goal Zero,” and its purpose is “no harm or omission,” Dennett said.

“Goal Zero is an honor, but we don’t equate it with the harm done on a large scale. It’s great to keep individuals safe and prevent leaks that cause pollution and environmental problems. But at the heart of it, part of your business is emitting CO2 into the atmosphere at a rate that you know is unsustainable. You can’t continue this the way you’ve been doing for the last 30 years. “Denette told CNBC.

“Something is wrong”

Why she broke the bond

She says she would have stayed if Dennett thought Shell was making a sincere effort to move from a carbon-emitting energy source to a clean energy source.

But that wasn’t what she observed. On the contrary, Dennett was asked to reformat the safety investigation so that it could be used in new projects to build pipelines and rigs. And that’s when Dennett decides that what she’s looking at is “incorrect,” she told CNBC.

“It wasn’t just these two projects. I knew there were more projects planned,” Dennett told CNBC. “There were four more, five, six, seven.”

The second reason Dennett said she left was because climate change was not discussed internally.

“We have all the survey data, all the opportunities for people to provide open feedback, and they do — tens of thousands of words about safety. Climate change, or something like that, and There are few conversations about environmental issues, in the community. “

“And wonder why that doesn’t happen? Perhaps the PR, marketing and brand communications departments are just talking about how they can make themselves look like a more sustainable company. I think that conversation isn’t at the forefront of operations, it’s not culture. “

Shell has a new energy portfolio and Dennett is working with that division. But they are like side projects in Dennett’s view.

“It’s not very realistic,” Dennett said. For example, a small acquisition like a German battery company “honestly felt like a window dressing.”

“If the core of your business is to emit CO2 into the atmosphere at a rate that you know is unsustainable, you can’t continue that way you’ve been doing for the last 30 years.”

Caroline Dennett

Founder of Clout Market Intelligence & Research

Shell told CNBC that he is working on a decarbonization goal.

“Shell is determined to realize its global strategy of becoming a net-zero company by 2050, and thousands of people are working hard to achieve this. We are short-term, We will set medium- and long-term goals and achieve all of them. ” “We have already invested billions of dollars in low-carbon energy, but the world still needs oil and gas for decades to enter a sector that cannot be easily decarbonized.”

Shell is not the only customer of Clout. And Dennett knows that he is in a privileged position to decide to terminate his contract with Shell.

“I know there are people at the forefront of these industries. They have no choice. They really have no choice. Is it oil and gas or bust?” Dennett said. I told CNBC.

In Europe, North America, and some other regions, there are places where skilled workers can find employment, especially if they have engineering or other technical skills.

“But in places like Nigeria, there aren’t many others, and the local communities are so devastated by pollution that traditional types of agriculture and fishing are very limited,” Dennett said. I told CNBC. “You could go to another oil and gas player, but it’s the same, just jump from one to the other.”

Ultimately, Dennett wants the shell leader to hear her message.

“They are powerful companies that can accomplish so many things in the world,” Dennett said. “It’s very disappointing. They have all the capabilities and power to do it. I really hope they have a future vision and strategy that does not involve avoiding climate risks. “

Shell Safety Consultant Stops Climate Change with Viral Message

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