BP Reports $2.6 Billion in Profits After Hottest Month on Record

Local weather advocates notice that the trade’s earnings are hovering just like the temperature will increase they’re liable for.

The London-based oil large BP reported second-quarter earnings of $2.6 billion on Tuesday and introduced a ten% dividend increase for shareholders on the heels of what was probably the hottest month on record — a grim milestone that scientists say was made possible by the burning of fossil fuels.

Whereas BP’s earnings for the second quarter of 2023 had been far decrease than the huge $8.5 billion it logged throughout the identical interval final 12 months — a drop brought on by falling international oil costs — the corporate has nonetheless raked in $7.6 billion in earnings up to now this 12 months. The corporate has paid out those profits to buyers within the type of share buybacks and dividends.

BP said in its earnings announcement that it’s going to repurchase one other $1.5 billion value of its shares over the subsequent three months.

“In 2021, BP’s CEO described his firm as a ‘money machine’ after hovering oil and fuel costs boosted earnings,” Jonathan Noronha-Gant, a senior campaigner at World Witness, mentioned in an announcement Tuesday. “Almost two years on, and BP is driving the wave of the power disaster, and handing enormous sums of cash to its shareholders whereas the U.Okay.’s poverty charges spiral.”

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“That is what a damaged power system appears like — oil giants get richer as a result of the remainder of us get poorer,” Noronha-Gant added. “For BP the power disaster has been a large money seize; for fogeys throughout the nation it has been an not possible selection between feeding their youngsters and paying their payments.”

BP’s earnings report comes after its rival, Shell, posted $5.1 billion in second-quarter earnings final week and introduced a dividend enhance of 15% amid a deadly international heatwave.

Nicolò Wojewoda, Europe regional director at 350.org, mentioned Tuesday that “you’d suppose that these most liable for the most popular month in recorded human historical past are being held accountable.”

“Assume once more — fossil gasoline corporations, as an alternative of dealing with penalties, proceed being rewarded with record-breaking annual earnings, having cashed in additional than $200 billion in 2022 alone,” mentioned Wojewoda. “Fossil gasoline trade earnings are hovering alongside the rise in international temperatures they’re liable for. This should finish now. We should maintain them accountable for the injury they’ve inflicted, making them pay for it and phasing their harmful affect out of existence.”

On Monday, a bunch of U.S. lawmakers led by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) urged the Biden Justice Division to sue fossil gasoline corporations for main “a decadeslong, fastidiously coordinated marketing campaign of misinformation to obfuscate local weather science and persuade the general public that fossil fuels usually are not the first driver of local weather change.”

BP knew about the link between fossil fuels and local weather change for years earlier than it started publicly acknowledging the connection and styling itself as a renewable energy leader — a posture it has since abandoned.

Like Shell and other oil giants, BP recently walked back a few of its acknowledged emission-reduction targets and introduced plans to provide extra fossil fuels than beforehand anticipated. Earlier this 12 months, BP mentioned it intends to chop fossil gasoline manufacturing by 25% under 2019 ranges by decade’s finish as an alternative of its earlier objective of 40%.

Dorothy Guerrero, head of coverage and advocacy on the U.Okay.-based group World Justice Now, mentioned in response to Tuesday’s earnings outcomes that “as soon as once more BP has raked in hideous earnings as our planet burns.”

“From individuals battling the price of residing within the U.Okay. to communities on the frontline of local weather disasters within the World South, we’re all footing the invoice for the reckless profiteering of the fossil gasoline trade,” mentioned Guerrero. “Sufficient is sufficient. The federal government should cease turning a blind eye as shareholders line their pockets at our collective expense. It’s time to herald a everlasting polluters’ tax to carry BP and different fossil gasoline corporations to account for the injury they proceed to wreak.”

“Leaving this trade with the ability to revenue with out consequence,” Guerrero added, “will not be solely morally abhorrent — it’s plainly ludicrous within the face of a local weather disaster that threatens us all.”

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