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Photo: Miguel Candela/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Royal Dutch Shell said Tuesday that it's leaving American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM), a major Beltway industry lobbying group, over differences on climate change policy.

Why it matters: The rupture signals how Shell and some other oil giants, largely headquartered in Europe, are moving more aggressively on climate than the petroleum industry as a whole.

"We have identified material misalignment on climate-related policy positions with this association," Shell said in a published review of its membership in trade associations. Shell said it would not renew its AFPM membership next year.

What they're saying: The report lays out several policy differences with AFPM, noting that "AFPM has not stated support for the goal of the Paris Agreement," which Shell backs.

It also cites AFPM's opposition to carbon pricing and the trade group's support for Trump administration moves to weaken auto mileage standards set under the Obama administration that cover the first half of the 2020s, among other differences.

The big picture: Shell reviewed its worldwide participation in 19 industry associations overall, finding agreement with 9 and "some misalignment" with 9 others in addition to the deeper split with AFPM. But it's only leaving AFPM.

Groups with "some misalignment" with Shell's climate positions include the American Petroleum Institute, which is the industry's most powerful U.S lobbying group, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

What's next: "We will continue to engage further with these industry associations to promote climate-related policies that support the goal of the Paris Agreement," Shell said.

The company said it would "closely monitor" its positions relative to these groups, and weigh actions including:

  • "Increase transparency about our own policy positions, and about differences with these industry associations."
  • Engage with them more in areas where they differ.
  • Reassess their membership when they identify risks of major differences and keep open the option of leaving the groups.

Flashback: The review of trade group memberships stemmed from a wider agreement reached in December with activist investors under the umbrella of Climate Action 100+.

As part of that deal, Shell has begun setting short-term carbon emissions goals for its products and linking them to executive pay.

Go deeper: Axios' Amy Harder explores Shell's wider climate positioning here.

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: Coronavirus cases rose 10% in the week before Thanksgiving.
  2. Politics: Supreme Court backs religious groups on New York coronavirus restrictions.
  3. World: Expert says COVID vaccine likely won't be available in Africa until Q2 of 2021 — Europeans extend lockdowns.
  4. Economy: The winners and losers of the COVID holiday season.
  5. Education: National standardized tests delayed until 2022.
3 hours ago - Health

Standardized testing becomes another pandemic victim

Photo: Edmund D. Fountain for The Washington Post via Getty

National standardized reading and math tests have been pushed from next year to 2022, the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) announced Wednesday.

Why it matters: There’s mounting national evidence that students are suffering major setbacks this year, with a surge in the number of failing grades.

4 hours ago - World

European countries extend lockdowns

A medical worker takes a COVID-19 throat swab sample at the Berlin-Brandenburg Airport. Photo by Maja Hitij via Getty

Recent spikes in COVID-19 infections across Europe have led authorities to extend restrictions ahead of the holiday season.

Why it matters: "Relaxing too fast and too much is a risk for a third wave after Christmas," said European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.