Pension savers losing patience with Shell

Ffion White

by , PR Manager

20 May 2024 /  

May 2024


Pension savers are strongly backing shareholder calls for Shell to further reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.

A survey of pension savers by PensionBee1 revealed that almost 60% of respondents – equal to nearly 18.5 million pensions savers2 – would vote in favour of wanting Shell to commit to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. This would align with internationally recognised limits to keep global temperatures from rising to a point that will put human life in danger.

The survey data coincides with Shell’s upcoming AGM (scheduled for 21 May), where Shell will be presented with crucial questions – including this one on greenhouse gas emissions – following a series of shareholder resolutions tabled.

The call for Shell to align its business operations with global climate goals is reverberating across the investment landscape. With shareholders increasingly tired of the world’s biggest polluters not being held to account for their actions, the pressure is mounting on Shell to heed the voices of millions of pension savers and embrace a path towards a greener future.

Shell’s shareholders have faced similar shareholder resolutions at previous AGMs, with increasing levels of support. Last year’s resolution for Shell to align its existing 2030 reduction target with the goal of the Paris Climate Agreement won 20% of the vote, requiring Shell to formally engage with, and provide updates to, its investors.

Shell’s profits have reached record highs in recent years.This month it announced it would provide its shareholders with another $3.5bn (£2.8bn) in share buybacks over the second quarter of the year after reporting better than expected profits of almost $8bn for the first three months of 2024.

As of 2024, Shell operates in more than 70 countries and produces 2,791 thousand barrels of oil equivalent (KBOE/D). It also states that it has reduced its net carbon intensity of energy products it sells by 6.3% compared with 2016, while also claiming to have invested $5.6 billion in low-carbon energy solutions.3

Clare Reilly, Chief Engagement Officer at PensionBee, commented: “Pension savers are long term investors with a vested interest in ensuring that companies like Shell are not reducing their chances of a healthy and safe retirement.

“The overwhelming response from our survey shows pension savers want to see the big polluters commit to more aggressive greenhouse gas reduction targets by 2030. Savers foresee that a chaotic climate transition will be a costly climate transition, impacting their pots as much as their air quality.”


  1. The survey results are based on the responses of 1,000 UK residents – aged 18-66 – who either are currently contributing to a pension or have a pension that they are not currently contributing to (not including the State Pension). The survey was run in April 2024.
  2. Based on ONS data stating around 31.9 million private pension savers.
  3. Shell company fact sheet

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