Segment earnings in 2021 were $9,694 million, which included a net gain of $3,268 million on sale of assets mainly related to the sale of the Permian business in the USA, partly offset by post-tax impairment charges of $479 million, a net charge of $393 million due to the fair value accounting of commodity derivatives and fourth quarter 2021 legal provisions of $287 million.
Segment earnings in 2020 were a loss of $10,785 million, which included a net charge of $6,447 million related to impairments, primarily in the US Gulf of Mexico, unconventional assets in North America, offshore assets in Brazil and Europe, and a project in Nigeria (OPL245), mainly triggered by revision of Shell’s mid- and long-term commodity price and updated Appomattox subsurface understanding. Also included was a net charge of $782 million related to the impact of the weakening Brazilian real on a deferred tax position.
Excluding the net gains described above, segment earnings in 2021 were a profit of $7,950 million, compared with a loss of $2,852 million in 2020. Earnings excluding the net gains were helped by higher oil and gas prices mainly driven by the improved macroeconomic conditions as described in the business condition section and the one-off release of a tax provision in Nigeria of $628 million.
Prior year earnings summary
Our earnings summary for the financial year ended December 31, 2020, compared with the financial year ended December 31, 2019, can be found in the Annual Report and Accounts and Form 20-F (page 37) for the year ended December 31, 2020, as filed with the Registrar of Companies for England and Wales and the US Securities and Exchange Commission, respectively.