Climate campaigners have said the announcement of £29billion (US$36.2b) in annual profits showed how the fossil fuel giant Equinor was ‘benefiting from the public’s pain’. The company’s fourth quarter profits today were £6.9 billion (US$8.68b).

The Norwegian state-owned Equinor is the UK’s largest supplier of fossil gas and is aiming to develop the controversial Rosebank oil field in the North Sea.

SSE and Equinor have submitted a planning application to build a new gas burning power station at Peterhead, in addition to the existing gas plant. The new station would operate beyond Scotland’s legally enshrined target to hit ‘net zero’ emissions by 2045. Campaigners say that a new fossil fuel power station will tie people to the same volatile global gas markets for decades to come, making the climate and cost of living crises worse.

Recent research into fossil fuel lobbying at the Scottish Parliament revealed that MSPs were lobbied by the company 28 times in the last 5 years.

Friends of the Earth Scotland climate campaigner Alex Lee (they/them) commented,

“Equinor’s profits are the public’s pain. The fossil fuel giant is still raking in billions whilst people across Scotland cannot afford to heat their homes.

“Equinor’s onshore and offshore fossil fuel expansion plans must be stopped. This company wants to extract more and more wealth from Scottish households. As the evidence of climate breakdown mounts up, politicians giving the green light to decades more of drilling and burning oil and gas would be extremely reckless.”

“Instead of encouraging big polluters, both the Scottish and UK Governments should be investing in a fast and fair transition to renewable energy, with workers and communities’ needs at its heart. The climate emergency demands working climate solutions such as improved public transport, ensuring warm homes and renewable energy run in the public interest.”

Notes to Editors

Equinor profit announcement:

Equinor supply 27% of UK demand for natural gas and more than 15% of oil.

The approval of Rosebank oil field is being subject to a juidicial review by Greenpeace and Uplift

Peterhead gas power station explainer:

Scottish Government modelling estimated 860,000 homes in fuel poverty in October 2022

FoES investigation “Polluted Politics: The fossil fuel lobby at Holyrood” was one of the largest reviews of corporate lobbying ever undertaken in Scotland. It found 790 meetings between the fossil fuel industry and Members of the Scottish Parliament (MSPs) since 2018.

Friends of the Earth Scotland is:
* Scotland’s leading environmental campaigning organisation
* An independent Scottish charity with a network of thousands of supporters and active local groups across Scotland
* Part of the largest grassroots environmental network in the world, uniting over 2 million supporters, 73 national member groups, and 5,000 local activist groups.