The oil and gas sector has a key role to play in achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), according to global oil and gas industry association IPIECA.
IPIECA’s Accelerating action: An SDG Roadmap for the oil and gas sector report found that the oil and gas industry contributed to all 17 SDGs and highlighted 10 where the industry could have the biggest impact.
IPIECA executive director Brian Sullivan said the roadmap would help companies go beyond business as usual to achieve the goals.
“Integrating SDGs into core business activities will not only generate significant contributions to the SDGs, it can also help companies build resilience during the energy transition, attract and retain top talent, manage regulatory and reputational risks, and present new market opportunities and access to sustainable finance,” Mr Sullivan said.
“As well as offering the sector direction on the SDGs, the roadmap also identifies where to focus collaboration and provides a platform to form industry and cross sector partnerships to further accelerate SDG action.”
According to the report, the world was not on track to achieve the SDGs by 2030, even before the impacts of COVID-19.
It said that the oil and gas sector would have a fundamental role to play in transforming the energy system and that this would support other sectors to reduce emissions.
“Oil and gas currently provide nearly 55 per cent of the world’s energy supply and as the world’s population continues to grow, rising prosperity will increase energy demand, particularly in developing countries,” the report said.
“Access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all is essential for economic growth, employment, education, poverty reduction and global health.”
In establishing the industry’s current position, IPIECA determined 10 SDGs where the industry would have the greatest impact, including good health and well-being, clean water and sanitation, affordable and clean energy, decent work and economic growth, industry innovation and infrastructure, responsible consumption and production, climate action, life below water, life on land, and peace, justice and strong institutions.
Australian peak industry body APPEA welcomed the release of the report.
“APPEA members are keenly aligned with the UN’s SDGs, regarding important issues such as climate action, energy availability (particularly in relation to energy poverty) and efficiency as key business pillars,” APPEA said.
“As such, the announcement of a new roadmap from a globally focused industry association such as IPIECA can guide Australia’s oil and gas industry as it further ramps ongoing efforts to contribute to a cleaner energy future in alignment with the UN SDGs.”