Royal Dutch Shell PLC is a multinational corporation (MNC) which operates in the oil industry. The company believes that success in business depends on its ability to meet a wide range of social and environmental challenges (Shell 2010)…
Oil is a major contributor to greenhouse gases which results in climate change. The company is on a drive to become more socially responsible by not only reducing its carbon footprints but by improving the safety of its work environment and is employees. In so doing it seeks to reduce the number of accidents and fatalities as well as the number of oil spills, blowouts and flarings at its operations globally. Shell has faced a lot of criticisms from the communities in which it operates and non-governmental organizations (NGO’s) that are concerned about the companies safety practices, the environment and human rights. The company is currently working with communities, its partners and NGO’s in order to deal with potential impacts and also to share the benefits that derive from operations and projects.
Shell’s Display of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)
According to the company’s CEO Vosser (2010, qtd. in Shell 2010), strong principles as well as the development of trust are fundamental to shells approach and the respect for human rights is deeply entrenched in the company’s General Business Principles which it proudly boasts as having being developed since 1976. Vosser (2010, qtd in Shell 2010) also reveals that the company has adopted transparency as a way of dealing with some of its problems at its operations in Nigeria which has been plagued by operational spills, spills arising from sabotage and spills arising from the theft of fuel. This allows it to keep track of spills in order to determine the main cause. With respect to safety, the company has signed up with the UN Global Compact LEAD which seeks to reinforce commitment by businesses to the principles of Global Compact. Shell has been a member of this group since 2000. The company’s safety measures has been heightened as a result of the BP Deepwater Horizon incident in the Gulf of Mexico which dominated the news all over the world in 2010 and the oil spill that resulted. Shell believes that it has the necessary skills and technical expertise to avert such a situation in its operations based on its stringent operating standards which it applies globally. This is a demonstration of its ability to operate in a socially responsible manner despite the diversity of challenges the company faces. Shell’s goal is zero fatality and zero accidents (Shell 2010). In terms of safety in its deepwater operations the company ensures that the persons employed in this area of its operations are properly trained and are competent to handle the requirements of the job. Shell’s focus on the environment lies in some key areas, including CO2, flaring, spills, and the company’s use of water. The company has invested in technology that will lead to more energy efficient refineries and chemical plants. To this end the company has developed carbon capture and storage technology to effectively reduce carbon emissions. The company is working assiduously to reduce gas flarings in Nigeria; one of its locations in which it seeks to tackle environmental problems head on. In order to assist in the improvement of standards and practices that may lead to environmental sustainability the company is working with some leading environmental organisations in the quest to adhere to proper environmental management of the energy sector. In addition to providing jobs and training for its employees, Shell also shares the benefits of its operations with the communities in which it operates by providing contracts for goods and services and by ...
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