BP to Chamber: Were Staying

In a speech at the Oil & Money Conference in London, BP CEO Tony Hayward urged for a strong private/government partnership to implement a comprehensive cap-and-trade system.  That’s a polar opposite stance to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s own anti cap-and-trade position.

On cap-and-trade Hayward said:

At BP we favour a Cap and Trade system because it gives environmental certainty based on an absolute emissions cap.

Such a system needs to treat all carbon as equal and push for the best possible outcome in terms of both the carbon and economic impact across all industrial sectors.

So, given that Exelon, Pacific Gas and Electric, and Apple, which all support cap-and-trade and  have all walked away from the Chamber because of its opposition to cap-and-trade, is “beyond petroleum” BP ready to rescind its own membership?

Not likely, BP spokesman David Nicholas tells us in an email. He writes:

Yes, BP is a member of the US Chamber of Commerce and expects to remain so. We are a member of many different trade and business organisations, through which we gain information on many matters. These organisations take positions on many different issues, not all of which always co-incide with ours.

On cap-and-trade, Nicholas writes:

Our position on carbon pricing is very clear – we support government frameworks that establish a price for carbon, and we favour cap and trade systems, treating all carbon as equal, to deliver this. To achieve desired outcomes may also need support from governments through regulation and incentives.

It’s official. BP’s staying…for now. Chamber President Tom Donohue will likely breath a sigh of relief. An oil and gas super major quiting the Chamber because of its pro-carbon policies would have been a hard one for the Chamber to take.