TotalEnergies

InfluenceMap Score
C-
Performance Band
62%
Organisation Score
56%
Relationship Score
Sector:
Energy
Head​quarters:
Paris, France
Brands and Associated Companies:
Elf Aquitaine
Official Web Site:
Wikipedia:

Climate Lobbying Overview: TotalEnergies has communicated more positive top-line positions on certain climate-motivated policies since 2015, although continues to advocate an energy policy agenda focused on advancing the role of fossil fuels, particularly fossil gas, in the energy mix. The company retains membership to a number of powerful trade associations engaged in the active opposition of climate regulations.

Top-line Messaging on Climate Policy:TotalEnergies top-line messaging on climate policy appears to be largely positive. In a statement in 2020, TotalEnergies has confirmed its support for the Paris Agreement and limiting warming to well below 2C. In February 2021, TotalEnergies CEO Patrick Pouyanné wrote to John Kerry supporting the Biden administration's decision to rejoin the Paris Agreement. Furthermore, in the same year, TotalEnergies has stated in a press release that it supports the EU’s net zero by 2050 emissions target. In its 2020 Climate Report, the company stated it would actively advocate for policies that support ‘net zero’ and the company appears to be positively positioned on carbon pricing, stating that it actively advocates for carbon pricing on its corporate website in 2021.

Engagement with Climate-Related Regulations: TotalEnergies has had some positive engagements with renewable energy policy and emissions reduction legislation. Regarding renewables, on its website in 2021, TotalEnergies has stated it supports policies, initiatives and technologies to promote growth in renewable energies. Additionally, in 2021 TotalEnergies advocated directly to the EU Commission in favor of minimum blending mandates for renewable fuels in the aviation and maritime sectors.

TotalEnergies appears to have positive engagement with regulations regarding methane emission reductions. In the U.S., TotalEnergies opposed the Trump Administration’s removal of methane emissions regulation in 2019 and in the EU, the company has advocated in favor of including methane emissions regulation in the EU Green Deal in 2020. Additionally, in an EU consultation response in January 2021, TotalEnergies stated its support for the EU’s increased GHG emissions target of 55% by 2030.

Total appears to have more mixed engagement with carbon pricing policies. In a December 2021 opinion piece, TotalEnergies CEO Patrick Pouyanné stated support for an EU guarantee of origin scheme for renewable energy that incorporated the Renewable Energy Directive's sustainability criteria. Additionally, in January 2021, the company supported the development of a Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) in the EU, although it advocated for the gradual phase out of free allowances and compensation rather than an immediate removal, weakening the overall climate ambition of the policy. In contrast to TotalEnergies’s positive top line position on carbon pricing, however, in 2020 in response to COVID-19, TotalEnergies signed a joint letter spearheaded by the Business Council of Alberta in Canada, which called for freezing the federal carbon tax. Furthermore, the company also stated support for the Climate Leadership Council’s carbon dividend in the U.S. in its 2020 Climate Change Report, which, while promoting a carbon price, also calls for the removal of other forms of policy.

Positioning on Energy Transition: TotalEnergies’ positioning on the energy mix is mixed. The company has released statements on the energy transition, such as in April 2021 where it stated its support for the UK’s energy transition goals. In October 2020, in a consultation submission, the company appeared to support a minimum tax rate under the EU’s Energy Taxation Directive and the removal of tax exemptions for aviation and maritime fuels.

Nevertheless, TotalEnergies has repeatedly promoted a long-term role for fossil gas in the energy mix without tying its use to the deployment of CCS. Iin 2020, the company published a video on its corporate website, in which it stated that the first challenge of the energy mix was to provide affordable energy and as such, hydrocarbons would still be an important energy source in 20-35 years. Additionally, in October 2021, TotalEnergies CEO Patrick Pouyanné stated replacing coal with gas is ‘good for climate’, and stressed the intermittency of renewable energy. In TotalEnergies 2020 Climate Report it stated that the company sees natural gas as a ‘key component’ to the energy transition, while supporting CCS but not tying fossil gas use with CCS development. Additionally, in a 2020 submission to the EU regarding its Energy Taxation Directive, it advocated for hydrogen produced from natural gas to be included in the policy while also advocating for it to be given the same favorable tax treatment as green hydrogen.

Industry Association Governance:TotalEnergies does not appear to have published a dedicated industry association review, however it includes a section in its ‘climate report’ titled ‘Industry associations: reviewing to work better together’, in which the company discloses its memberships to industry associations as well as a review to determine whether the company is aligned with said industry associations on climate change policy. However, there are no details of what positions TotalEnergies representatives hold within each industry association or activities undertaken to attempt to influence the association’s positions. In TotalEnergies's most recent 2020 climate report, the company confirmed it was leaving Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) and that it was not aligned with the American Petroleum Institute, which it later left in January 2021. Nevertheless, it retains memberships to the Australian Petroleum Production & Exploration Association (APPEA) and BusinessEurope, both of which have traditionally lobbied against a variety of climate change policies.

QUERIES
DATA SOURCES
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Strength of Relationship
STRONG
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
WEAK
 
57%
 
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58%
 
48%
 
48%
 
60%
 
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62%
 
62%
 
50%
 
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53%
 
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42%
 
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59%
 
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39%
 
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94%
 
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36%
 
36%
 
68%
 
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86%
 
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42%
 
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63%
 
63%
 
40%
 
40%
 
74%
 
74%

How to Read our Relationship Score Map

In this section, we depict graphically the relationships the corporation has with trade associations, federations, advocacy groups and other third parties who may be acting on their behalf to influence climate change policy. Each of the columns above represents one relationship the corporation appears to have with such a third party. In these columns, the top, dark section represents the strength of the relationship the corporation has with the influencer. For example if a corporation's senior executive also held a key role in the trade association, we would deem this to be a strong relationship and it would be on the far left of the chart above, with the weaker ones to the right. Click on these grey shaded upper sections for details of these relationships. The middle section contains a link to the organization score details of the influencer concerned, so you can see the details of its climate change policy influence. Click on the middle sections for for details of the trade associations. The lower section contains the organization score of that influencer, the lower the more negatively it is influencing climate policy.