Valero Energy

InfluenceMap Score
E-
Performance Band
24%
Organisation Score
35%
Relationship Score
Sector:
Energy
Head​quarters:
San Antonio, United States
Brands and Associated Companies:
Ultramar, Diamond Shamrock, Beacon
Official Web Site:
Wikipedia:

Climate Lobbying Overview: Valero Energy appears to be lobbying negatively on US climate change policy, with somewhat active engagement. The company demonstrates limited top-line communication on climate policy and has engaged in opposition to specific policies such as vehicle GHG emissions standards.

Top-line Messaging on Climate Policy: Valero has relatively limited top-line messaging on climate policy. While its 2022 ESG report, released in August 2022, references the International Energy Agency (IEA)’s Net Zero by 2050 report, the company does not appear to have expressed a clear position on the need to reduce global emissions in line with a 1.5C target. It has not offered a clear position on climate science, the need for climate regulation, or the Paris Agreement.

Engagement with Climate-Related Regulations: Valero appears to have mostly negative engagement with climate change policy. In May 2022, Valero submitted a comment to the EPA advocating in strong opposition to the agency’s proposed heavy-duty vehicle emissions standards. In that comment, it cited the same arguments from (and reattached for reference) its September 2021 comments against the EPA’s proposed 2023 and Later Model Year Light­ Duty Vehicle GHG Emissions Standards. In May 2021, Valero served as a witness supporting Texas Senate Bill 1261, which would limit local jurisdictions' ability to regulate greenhouse gases. In April 2021, a Valero executive suggested the company could be supportive of a carbon tax on an investor call, a seemingly more positive position following a Valero executive suggesting in July 2020 that Valero was unlikely to support a future US carbon tax due to concerns over the post-COVID economy and the risk of carbon leakage. According to a lobbying disclosure report from Q1 2022, Valero engaged with policymakers on issues related to the downstream refining sector within the Build Back Better Act, though it did not disclose its position on the issue.

Positioning on Energy Transition: Valero does not appear to fully support the transition of the energy mix. In August 2022, Yahoo Finance reported on Valero’ praise for the Inflation Reduction Act, but without specifying the company’s positions on the bill’s various climate and energy provisions. Valero is particularly active in California: in August 2022, it submitted a comment to the EPA opposing the waiver that allows California to enact its own stricter vehicle emissions standards, citing issues with the legality of the Advanced Clean Trucks rule in particular. In September 2021, it opposed the phase-out of fossil fuel production in California, including through electrification and clean transportation measures, in comments to the California Air Resources Board. More generally, in July 2020, CEO Joe Gorder stated that “fossil fuels are going to be with us for a very long time” and appeared to support increased future oil consumption. Valero supported Critical Infrastructure Bills to criminalize protests against fossil fuel infrastructure in August 2019 in Oklahoma and June 2019 in Texas, as reported by the Intercept and San Antonio Business Journal, respectively.

Valero has also engaged heavily on the issue of biofuels and the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). In April 2022, a Valero comment to the EPA seemed to take a more favorable position on biofuels while urging the agency to consider the adverse impacts of other transportation fuel technologies, such as batteries needed in electric vehicles. Historically, Valero has taken legal action against the RFS, including arguing in the DC Circuit Court of Appeals in September 2019 that the EPA’s biofuel mandates were too high.

Industry Association Governance: Valero has produced a dedicated review of its industry association memberships, but with extremely limited detail of its alignment with these groups on climate policy. The company is a member of the Western States Petroleum Association (WSPA), but does not disclose several others, such as FuelsEurope, nor the fact that CEO Joe Gorder is President of the Board of the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM), another group actively and negatively engaged on climate change policy.

A detailed assessment of the company's corporate review on climate policy engagement can be found on InfluenceMap's CA100+ Investor Hub here.

QUERIES
DATA SOURCES
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Strength of Relationship
STRONG
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
WEAK
 
20%
 
20%
 
47%
 
47%
 
29%
 
29%
 
47%
 
47%
 
41%
 
41%

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.