Shell develops sustainability management plan

Company remains "totally committed" to environment despite poor financial performance

Oil company Shell has reaffirmed its commitment to sustainable development with the introduction of a management framework aimed at driving the principles of sustainability through all of its operations. Announced with the publication this week of a second annual report on the "social effects" of the firm's operations, the framework will be "embedded progressively" into its businesses to allow comparison of actual company performance with a set of global health, safety and environment standards. According to the report, the standards are based on OECD norms and will take "several years" to implement fully. Shell chairman Mark Moody-Stuart said the company was "totally committed" to a business strategy that "generates profits while contributing to the well-being of the planet," despite the "harsh financial pressures" that the company has recently experienced. The report lists other achievements made in the last year, such as reaching a target to cut emissions of greenhouse gases by 5% compared to 1990 levels. The company plans a further 5% cut by 2002, mainly through the phasing out of waste gas flaring from oilfields. The report also sets out Shell's vision of increased renewable energy in the future and backs it up with a new investment programme which will contribute US$22m (euros 20.7m) annually to projects aimed at reducing the environmental impact of fossil fuels and creating sustainable energy projects in developing countries.

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