Global report finds Sasol climate change disclosures lacking

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  • Sasol has been found to fall short on some climate disclosure requirements aimed at aligning the company with the goals of the Paris Agreement on climate change.
  • A global report, which benchmarks corporates against nine key indicators, found that Sasol's emission reduction targets do not meet standards.
  • Non-profit shareholder activism organisation, Just Share, which has been a consistent critic of Sasol's climate strategy, said the findings of the report supported its position on the company which it has previously called out for not having a clear reduction strategy.


Sasol - whose operations are some of the country's biggest emitters of greenhouse gases - has been found to fall short on some climate disclosure requirements aimed at aligning the company with the goals of the Paris Agreement on climate change.

This is an assessment contained in a report by Climate Action 100+, which surveyed companies around the world on the indicators of success for business alignment with a net zero emissions future and goals of the Paris accord of limiting global temperature increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius.

The report, which benchmarks corporates against nine key indicators, found that Sasol's emission-reduction targets do not meet standards and in some cases partially meets the greenhouse gas emission reductions goals, despite the commitments made by the petrochemicals giant in its latest Climate Change report.

Climate Action 100+, the world’s largest investor-engagement initiative on climate change, found that Sasol's long-term strategy in reducing its greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) emissions by between 2036 and 2050 on a clearly defined scope of emissions "does not meet any criteria" and neither does its ambition to achieve net-zero GHG emissions by 2050 or sooner. 

In its 2020 Climate Change Report, Sasol outlined plans for reducing emissions to meet its reduction target using the company's 2030 roadmap, and committed to identifying 2050 long-term reduction opportunities that support a "Just Transition" and the Paris Agreement.

However, Climate Action found that it met some standards in having a board with a clear oversight of climate change, but failed on putting up a position at the board level with responsibility for climate change, including a "board position with explicit responsibility for climate change".

No clear reduction strategy

Non-profit shareholder activism organisation, Just Share, which has been a consistent critic of Sasol's climate strategy, said the findings of the report supported its position on the company which it has previously called out for not having a clear reduction strategy.

"If Sasol's 2050 'ambition and roadmap' do not meet these criteria, shareholders should not support the company’s non-binding resolution in November," said Just Share.

Sasol is expected to table its climate change resolution at its 2021 annual general meeting.

The firm's climate change report outlined that its global chemicals businesses outside the country were lower-carbon facilities operating under mature climate legislation, using lower carbon feedstocks and improved emission control technologies and that emissions were concentrated in South Africa.

"While we believe demand for liquid fuels will remain for some time to come, our energy business will still be exposed to future climate-related risks. In this regard, our 2050 long-term GHG emission reduction ambition will look to further minimise risks..." according to the climate report.

Sasol's Secunda plant is a large producer of hydrogen from coal-based feedstocks, responsible for a large portion of the company's emissions profile in the country.

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