An important element of emissions mitigation.
An important element of emissions mitigation.
Forests cover nearly a third of land on the earth’s surface. They are undergoing extensive deterioration due to various factors such as: unsustainable, extensive agriculture and the indiscriminate exploitation of timber, the use of biomass for energy purposes and phenomena of urbanisation. . According to the UNFCCC, between 1995 and 2005, 13 million hectars of forests were destroyed annually. This deterioration is sharply reducing the natural capacity of the Earth’s atmosphere to absorb CO2 (or the Natural Carbon Sink), in light of increased emissions linked to industrialisation.
This is why forest conservation projects are a pillar of Eni’s decarbonization strategy.
Eni’s approach focuses on the protection and conservation of primary and secondary forests, mostly in developing countries, where the science considers that the impact of climate change mitigation actions is more effective.
All of Eni’s initiativesfall within the UN-designed REDD+ (Reduction Emission from Deforestation and Degradation) scheme, which includes forest conservation as well as enhancement of natural CO2 storage capacity . At the same time, REDD+ aims to assist the development of local communities by promoting economic and social activities, in line with a sustainable management of forests and the conservation of biodiversity.
Eni works with national governments, local communities and the dedicated UN agencies to support the implementation of REDD+ strategies, in line with National Development Plans and the UN’s 2030 Agenda, through partnerships with international developers such as BioCarbon Partners, Peace Parks Foundation and Southpole.
With complete respect for local communities as well as their active participation, Eni works to limit the causes of deforestation by offering alternatives for local development that are compatible with the area itself and the forest that needs to be preserved. The main activities proposed are economic diversification initiatives such as sustainable agriculture projects and the promotion of eco-tourism; initiatives intended to increase access to energy and clean cooking and education and professional training programmes.
For Eni, working in partnership with international developers means overseeing every phase of REDD+ projects, from planning, up to implementation and verification of the emissions reduction. Such involvement in the projects is role essential both to guarantee that they comply with the REDD+ scheme and to ensure that they meet internationally recognised social and environmental standards (Verified Carbon Standard + Climate Community Biodiversity), which are in line with Eni’s own standards.
Eni is currently considering a range of different initiatives in various countries. Presently, the company has established its first partnerships, with the potential to slash, by 2030, more than 20 million tonnes of CO2 emissions per year, in countries such as Zambia, Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Mexico. Eni has also made direct contact with government representatives in Ghana, the Congo, Mozambique, Indonesia and Mexico with the intention of developing new initiatives, always within the REDD+ program.
Eni has completed a pre-feasibility study for the development of a pilot forest conservation project in Ghana, potentially covering two areas for a total of 60 thousand hectares (Ankasa Forest Reserve – Jomoro district & Amansuri Wetland – Jomoro & Ellembelle district). The company is now beginning the feasibility study.
Eni considers this area of activity on a par with its operational activities. That is why it has established a dedicated organisational structure to assess and develop forest conservation initiatives.
In presenting the 2019-2021 Strategic Plan, the company announced a new target linked to its decarbonization process: achieving carbon neutrality in direct upstream emissions by 2030.
Eni plans to achieve this by minimising direct upstream emissions, while offsetting the remainder through these primary and secondary forest conservation projects on a large scale.
More broadly, to reduce emissions Eni will eliminate gas flaring linked to production and slash fugitive methane emissions by 80% by 2025 compared with 2014.
Other building blocks of Eni’s decarbonization process are an increase in low-carbon sources in its portfolio, such as natural gas and biofuel, and emission-free sources like solar, wind and hybrid. It will also apply the principles of the circular economy to downstream businesses in order to maximise the use of waste as raw material and converting and extending the production life of its industrial sites. This innovative model will be completed through the use of new technologies to capture and make use of CO2 emissions.