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Our approach to respecting nature

Protecting the environment has been an integral part of the way we do business for many years as set out in the Shell General Business Principles and Shell Commitment and Policy on Health, Security, Safety, Environment and Social Performance.  

In 2021, as part of our Powering Progress strategy, we launched Respecting Nature, which sets out our environmental ambitions around biodiversity, water, circular economy and waste, and air quality. Our Respecting Nature commitments step up our approach to managing the impacts of our operations on the environment. They also aim to extend our approach with our supply chain, for example, with commitments around plastics and circular economy.

We adopted short-term goals and also set environmental ambitions for 2030 and later. Our new requirements are being embedded into our systems and processes. Accountability for delivery of this goal lies with our Executive Committee. We have restructured and resourced to add specialists on biodiversity and circularity into our organisation and are building capability with the help of external partners.

We have included our new commitments in our performance management and reporting systems and are defining the baselines for each of the commitments and setting 2022 targets across our businesses. We are working with external environmental partners to develop new approaches that will show the extent of the progress we are making towards our environmental goals.

Our purchasing policies will include requirements that reflect our environmental framework and take the energy efficiency, material efficiency and sustainability of products into consideration in our purchases. See Supply chain.

We will continue to seek opportunities to go further. Our environmental ambitions will be underpinned by collaboration and transparent reporting.

Environmental collaborations

Powering progress

  • Our ambition is to strengthen external partnerships and improve transparency on performance.
  • We will ensure that external partnerships inform key areas of development and delivery of our ambitions.

We work with external parties to enable a positive impact on the environment. Collaboration can help us to reduce waste, improve circularity of materials and help ensure local communities benefit from our presence.

Existing collaborations and new partnerships are key to implementing our Respecting Nature ambitions. Earthwatch and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) provided input to the development of our Respecting Nature commitments and continue to support their implementation.

We are also working with the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) to develop our approach to circularity.

Transparency and standards

We have joined the Taskforce for Nature-related Financial Disclosures (TNFD) Forum which is looking to develop a risk management and disclosure framework for organisations to report and act on evolving nature-related risks.

Our major installations are certified to independent environmental management system standards, such as ISO 14001 or equivalent systems required by local regulations. Major installations include crude oil and natural gas terminals, gas plants, manned offshore production platforms, refineries and chemicals manufacturing facilities. Of these, 97% were certified at end 2021. Read more about the certification of our major installations in the 2021 Annual Report.

Read more about our approach at

Read more about our environmental partners at

International Organization for Standardization
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International Union for Conservation of Nature
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World Business Council for Sustainable Development
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