IUCN - Shell Relationship 2007-2014

IUCN and Shell have been working together on energy and biodiversity issues since 2000. The current set of collaborative projects builds on an earlier, five-year collaborative agreement (2007-2012) that saw IUCN and Shell committing to demonstrate leadership in both the business and conservation sectors and use their combined comparative strengths to leverage positive changes for biodiversity conservation.

Following an end of term review of the 2007-2012 IUCN Shell agreement, the IUCN Council agreed a continuation of the collaboration. The current agreement, which is open-ended but subject to annual review, allows for the continuation of all joint initiatives except those related to the Arctic. It maintains the same overall objectives as those set out in the previous collaborative agreement and includes:

Enhance the biodiversity conservation performance of Shell and its Affiliates.
Raise biodiversity performance standards in the energy sector and its supply chains.
Strengthen IUCN capacity for leadership in business and biodiversity.
• Developing an initiative to assess the conservation-related aspects of the Bonsucro standards for sugarcane-based ethanol production in Brazil.
Creating the institutional capacity of the Iraqi authorities in collaboration with IUCN Members on the ground for appropriate conservation in oil and gas developments in the fragile ecosystems of the region.
Supporting the ongoing work of the IUCN-Niger Delta Panel to provide science-based recommendations for the remediation and rehabilitation of biodiversity and habitats of oil spill sites in the Niger Delta. This Panel was established in consultation with IUCN Members in Nigeria.
• Establishing the Net Positive Impact Alliance and the development of the Alliance’s work programme. 

Why Shell?


Energy: an IUCN priority
As a large-footprint industry, the oil & gas sector is one of IUCN’s priorities for business engagement.

Engaging with the energy sector is also central to accelerating the development of sustainable energy, another of IUCN’s overarching priorities.

Shell: a growing commitment to biodiversity
While IUCN does not agree with everything Shell does, the company has nevertheless demonstrated a willingness to change its operations and engage with the wider energy sector in order to reduce potential impacts on biodiversity.

In 2001, Shell became the first oil & gas company to develop a biodiversity standard. Now implemented across the business, the standard requires the company to address biodiversity early in new projects and integrate it into impact assessments; consult with biodiversity experts; and develop biodiversity action plans (BAPs) at existing operations in areas of high biodiversity value.

The company has also engaged in structured dialogue and joint initiatives with IUCN since 2000, aimed at developing new biodiversity conservation standards and operational procedures. Highlights from this collaboration include:

IUCN and Shell: an ongoing relationship
The current collaborative activities between Shell and IUCN represent the latest development in this long-standing relationship – and a continuation of IUCN’s strategy to influence the energy sector in places where it can effect change. It also represents a continuation of Shell’s strategy to collaborate with biodiversity experts in order to reduce its environmental impact and help conserve biodiversity.

Through this relationship, IUCN and Shell are exploring ways to upscale efforts and further integrate biodiversity in the energy business, as well as bring business skills and approaches to conservation.