Sustainability

Climate

Climate strategy

Imperial recognizes the important role we can play by advancing climate solutions within our operations and by providing lower life-cycle emissions products to our customers.

Our climate strategy leverages local advantages such as our skilled workforce, emerging technology, integrated operations, and a mature regulatory framework. It considers investments in lower-emission solutions while maintaining focus on business competitiveness and generating value for shareholders. Anticipating continued advancements in Canadian public policy and technology, our key climate strategy is underpinned by four pillars:

 

Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TFCD) guided disclosures with third-party verified GHGs1
  • Pillar 01

    Transformational technology solutions

    Imperial’s sustained investment of more than $2.4 billion in R&D over the past 20 years plays an important role in progressing development of promising next-generation upstream technologies that will have a smaller footprint, use less water and could lower greenhouse gas emissions intensity (GHGi) up to 90 per cent.2 Of significance, when coupled with carbon capture and storage, these lower-emission technologies have the ability to produce incremental barrels at net-zero emissions.
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  • Pillar 02

    Helping our customers reduce their emissions

    Imperial is focused on providing lower-carbon emission products that keep our communities and our customers moving. We are advancing plans to construct a world-class renewable diesel complex at our Strathcona refinery in Edmonton, Alberta with the potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by three million tonnes per year.3 We are excited to leverage hydrogen produced with carbon capture and storage technology and plant-based feedstock to produce lower-carbon intensity diesel fuel that helps our customers reduce their carbon emissions.
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  • Pillar 03

    Mitigating emissions in our operations

    Imperial continues its focus on improving energy efficiency and reducing GHG emissions at our operations.4 Our plans consider next-generation solvent-based upstream technologies, carbon capture and storage, low-carbon intensity hydrogen and small modular reactors to support emissions reductions.
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  • Pillar 04

    Finding solutions with partners and policy makers

    Achieving our shared vision for a lower-emissions energy future will require leadership, ingenuity and collaboration with governments, Indigenous communities, technology firms and other third parties. Government support is critical in developing durable, supportive and market-driven policies to help drive the greatest greenhouse gas emission reductions at the lowest cost to society.

    We recognize that connectivity and knowledge sharing positions our industry for a resilient lower-emissions future. Imperial became a founding member of the Oil Sands Pathways to Net Zero Alliance where the goal of this alliance is to work with the Government of Canada and the Government of Alberta to achieve net-zero emissions (Scope 1 and 2) for operated oil sands by 2050.5

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Goal to reduce operated oil sands GHGi by

10 per cent

by end of 2023 relative to 2016 levels. Builds on previous success of reducing GHGi in these assets by > 20 per cent between 2014-20164

Goal to reduce operated oil sands GHGi by

30 per cent

by 2030 relative to 2016 levels4

Long term goal to achieve

Net-zero

emissions in operated oil sands6 by 2050 through collaboration with governments and other partners

Imperial’s plans consider growth in renewable fuels, next-generation solvent-based upstream technologies, carbon capture and storage, low-carbon intensity hydrogen, small modular reactors and potentially using high-quality emissions offsets to address residual emissions. To learn more about Imperial’s climate strategy, please read our 2022 Advancing Climate Solutions report.

Imperial’s Leduc field has come full circle from the discovery of oil about 75 years ago to now enabling energy of the future

Imperial recently announced a partnership with E3 Lithium to conduct a pilot project that progresses commercialization of battery-grade lithium from our historic Leduc field for electric vehicles and energy storage solutions. The pilot project includes drilling Alberta’s first lithium evaluation wells. The work will focus on scaling up E3 Lithium’s proprietary technology, which brings brine liquid to the surface where lithium is removed and concentrated and the remaining liquid is then returned immediately underground. Imperial will provide technical and development support leveraging our water and reservoir management expertise.

Metrics and performance

Imperial is on track to meet our 2023 year-end greenhouse gas emissions intensity goal of 10 per cent reduction for operated oil sands facilities by the end of 2023, compared to 2016 levels.4  This improvement builds on our previous success of reducing GHGi in these assets by more than 20 per cent between 2013 and 2016. Looking ahead, we are working to reduce operated oil sands GHGi by 30 per cent by 2030 relative to 2016 levels.4

Operated oil sands GHG emissions intensity7,8,9

(metrics tonnes CO2e/m3 upstream production)

Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD)

Climate content is guided by the core elements of the framework developed by the Financial Stability Board’s Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD).

Governance

Imperial has an unwavering commitment to high ethical standards, legal compliance and integrity, starting with our board of directors and corporate governance policies. The Nominations and Corporate Governance Committee monitors and recommends implementation of appropriate corporate governance standards and is responsible for identifying and recommending highly qualified directors.

Metrics and targets

Imperial has consistently reported Scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions as they provide an accurate reflection of the company s direct effort to manage, measure and reduce emissions in our operations. The criteria for reporting these emissions is well-established, transparent and consistent across sectors.

Strategy

Growth of lower-emissions energy is good for society and is an objective our company supports. Imperial’s strategy considers investments in lower-emission solutions while maintaining focus on business competitiveness and generating value for shareholders. Anticipating continued advancements in Canadian public policy and technology, our key climate strategy is underpinned by four pillars: Transformational technology solutions; Helping our customers reduce their emissions; Mitigating emissions in our operations; and Finding solutions with partners and policy makers.

Risk management

Imperial uses a comprehensive risk management framework to identify and manage risk to the company. Risk management occurs at multiple levels of the business as part of Imperial’s risk management process. The Management Committee, which includes the chairman, president and chief executive officer, ensures risks, including climate risks, are addressed throughout the company. The company provides regular updates to the board of directors on business risks including climate risks and GHG emissions performance.

footnotes

1As required by provincial regulation in Alberta and Ontario, our greenhouse gas emissions are third-party verified.
2Compared to cyclic steam stimulation and/or steam-assisted, gravity drainage production methods.
3This project is expected to realize about 3 million tonnes per year in emissions reductions in the Canadian transportation sector compared to petroleum-based diesel. Internal calculation based on 2020 draft Canadian Fuel Regulations: Canada Gazette, Part I, Volume 154, Number 51: Clean Fuel Regulations.
4GHG emissions intensity (scope 1 and 2) from Imperial’s operated oil sands. Compared with 2016 operated oil sands GHGi. Government, legal or regulatory changes could directly or indirectly delay or otherwise impact GHG emissions intensity reduction measures.
5https://pathwaysalliance.ca/pressrelease/
6Scope 1 and 2; with support of clear and consistent government policies.
7Production basis: Operated oil sands (Kearl and Cold Lake) production basis same as reported under Alberta greenhouse gas emissions regulation.
8GHG emissions intensity is the ratio of GHG emissions to production or throughput.
9In 2019, our Cold Lake production volumes were unable to fully offset natural field decline and our Kearl mine site needed to move more overburden than the previous year. Although this resulted in a slight uptick in our GHGi metric for 2019, we remain focused on our 2023 and 2030 goals.