May 24, 2021 Read More →

Oil majors moving into electricity markets with renewables purchases

Wall Street Journal ($):

Businesses are buying more renewable power, and oil majors want a piece of the action.

European oil companies including BP PLC and Royal Dutch Shell PLC are building new wind and solar projects and striking deals to supply electricity to big corporate buyers like Amazon.com Inc. and Microsoft Corp. , treading into the domain of traditional power companies.

The moves come as more businesses look to limit their carbon emissions, with companies buying a record amount of renewable power last year and on track to hit a fresh high this year, according to data from BloombergNEF.

Oil companies say securing long-term deals to supply electricity will provide a new source of income and underpin their expansion into wind and solar power as they seek to reduce their dependence on fossil fuels and prepare for a lower-carbon economy.

Power supply has historically been regional, with utilities generating and providing electricity to homes and businesses in an area, state or country. Some of these traditional power suppliers have been tapping into demand from businesses for green power for several years, and have decades of operational know-how.

Still, oil executives say their global reach and vast trading operations give them an edge as companies take a more international approach to sourcing power.

[Sarah McFarlane]

More: Oil Majors Look to Fill Businesses’ Growing Appetite for Green Power

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