Media release

Coal miner Glencore defies investors - places reckless bet against the energy transition

The Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility​ (ACCR)  is commenting on the release of Glencore plc’s Climate Action Transition Plan (CATP), in which the world’s biggest thermal coal exporter has effectively stated it won’t decarbonise in line with the Paris Agreement.

At last year's annual general meeting, 30% of investors voted against Glencore’s previous climate plan. At the same AGM, a shareholder resolution co-filed by institutional investors and calling on the company to disclose how its thermal coal production plans align with the Paris objective of keeping global temperature increase to 1.5°C, received support of 29.22%

Despite this clear investor feedback, Glencore’s updated CATP:

  • walks away from the Paris-aligned pathway which is based on the most recent science (see Notes to Editors), saying, “Our targets are not aligned with the IEA’s Net Zero Emissions (NZE) Scenarios"
  • continues using an inflated baseline to measure its progress against emissions reduction targets. For example, Glencore is already measuring a 22% emissions decrease from its baseline - despite increasing coal output in 2023 - which means it is only expecting to achieve a 3% emissions reduction between now and 2030 (2030 target is 25%), despite this being the critical decade for climate action and emissions decline
  • has dropped its coal production cap, right when it might be needed most
  • introduces a new 2030 emissions target, which would usually be welcomed, however in this case it drags ambition backwards, by allowing for less action between 2026 and 2030 than in the previous climate plan - effectively delaying emissions reduction work to after 2030.

Naomi Hogan, Company Strategy Lead at the Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility (ACCR) said:

“This is an extremely concerning  step backwards for Glencore, especially given the overwhelming investor feedback it received at the last AGM that the company does not have a sound plan to successfully navigate energy transition risks.

“To have the world’s largest thermal coal exporter effectively walking away from Paris alignment is an enormous risk to Glencore’s investors and a risk to all portfolios exposed to the systemic risks of climate change. It represents a reckless bet against an orderly and timely energy transition.

“We’re deeply concerned that Glencore is removing its coal production cap right at a time when it might be needed most, given it is acquiring significant additional new coal assets and planning significant coal expansions.

“While we normally would welcome a company setting a 2030 emission reduction target, for Glencore, the devil is in the detail. The structure of this target and the way Glencore calculates its emissions reductions means Glencore doesn’t need to do much work on reducing its coal emissions until after 2030 - despite this being a critical decade for the climate and for companies to decarbonise.


ACCR’s view is that the IEA NZE pathway is the best available tool for assessment of Paris-alignment, because:

  • It aims to limit global warming to 1.5°C in 2100 and provides enough certainty that warming stays well below 2°C throughout the 21st century.
  • The temperature outcome in 2100 is determined by a climate model that takes into account all of the IEA’s assumptions, including those relating to energy security, recent technology developments, recent geopolitical events, along with providing comprehensive sectoral and geographic data.[1]
  • It is updated annually and takes into account the emissions output of recent years.

  1. The IEA bases its scenario temperature outcomes on outputs from MAGICC 7.5.3 (a reduced complexity climate model). See World Energy Outlook 2023, p.158 ↩︎

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