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Photo: Lance King/Getty Images

BP said Friday that its venture capital arm is investing $5 million in a company that specializes in offsetting carbon emissions through forest projects.

Why it matters: It's the latest example of oil giants using their venture arms to stake companies with tech and products designed to fight climate change.

Driving the news: BP is investing in Finite Resources Inc., which is the parent company of Finite Carbon.

  • "The investment will enable Finite Carbon to grow a new line of business to incentivize sustainable forest management, financed by businesses seeking to voluntarily offset carbon emissions," BP said in a release.

The big picture: Rob West, founder of the research firm Thunder Said Energy, tells me that oil majors' total VC spending may reach $700 million this year.

  • However, that's across all forms of tech, not just alternative energy and climate-related companies.

Where it stands: BP isn't the only oil major working in the forest space. The Italy-based multinational Eni calls forest conservation projects a "pillar" of their climate efforts.

  • Per Bloomberg, Eni rolled out plans earlier this year to plant 20 million acres in Africa.

But, but, but: The majors' investments in climate-friendly projects, business lines and startups remains a very small fraction of their spending on oil-and-gas exploration and production.

Go deeper

Updated 15 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Inauguration Day dashboard

U.S. Capitol and stage are lit at sunrise ahead of the inauguration of Joe Biden. Photo: Patrick Semansky - Pool/Getty Images

President Biden has delivered his inaugural address at the Capitol, calling for an end to the politics as total war but warning that "we have far to go" to heal the country.

What's next: Biden has arrived at the White House and he will sign executive orders and other presidential actions.

43 mins ago - Podcasts

Podcast: After the Biden inaugural

Joe Biden was sworn in today as America's 46th president in an inauguration unlike any other in modern history.

Axios Re:Cap goes deeper into the speech, the atmosphere and what it all tells us about the incoming administration, with Axios political reporters Hans Nichols and Alexi McCammond.

Biden embarks on a consequential presidency

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Donald Trump tried everything to delegitimize the rival who vanquished him. In reality, he's set Joe Biden on course to be a far more consequential U.S. president than he might otherwise have become.

The big picture: President Biden now confronts not just a pandemic, but massive political divisions and an assault on truth — and the aftermath of the assault on the Capitol two weeks ago that threatened democracy itself.