Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) is a state-owned integrated company headquartered in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). In 2020, it did not report its revenue or number of employees. ADNOC has the world’s 8th largest oil and gas reserves. There is no evidence that it has initiated a transition to the low-carbon economy, which is in stark contrast to UAE’s ambition for a post-hydrocarbon future.
As a state-owned, national monopoly, ADNOC is under little pressure to disclose financial, governance, risk or emissions information, and so it is impossible to assess its performance in these areas. As companies and many countries increasingly align with the Paris Agreement, they will begin to consider their entire supply chain. With this, companies such as ADNOC that are not engaging in a low-carbon transition will face increasing pressure in terms of declining demand for their products. ADNOC should improve its disclosure and develop a transition plan in line with the wider UAE ambition for a post-hydrocarbon future.
ADNOC currently sequesters 800,000 tonnes of CO2 annually and is targeting 5 million tonnes by 2030, which it plans to use for enhanced oil recovery. However, ADNOC should use this opportunity and its expertise to decarbonise as an end in itself, rather than to improve oil extraction rates.
There is no evidence that ADNOC is preparing for the low-carbon future and developing new business activities, despite this being the wider UAE strategy. ADNOC’s large, easily accessible fossil fuel resources insulate it from the need to change at present. However, any change in global oil demand could quickly change the oil and gas landscape, and ADNOC will be left without alternative revenue streams.
ADNOC receives a trend score of -. If the company were reassessed in the near future, its score would likely decrease. Although it has a target to reduce emissions intensity by 25% by 2030, there is little recent evidence in support of this. ADNOC seems unlikely to decrease its emissions intensity at a rate fast enough to align with its 1.5°C pathway.
While the UAE is attempting to prepare for the post oil and gas world, ADNOC remains unaffected by this ambition and has made no attempt to integrate it into its strategy and business model. The company’s only new business activities relate to increasing its unconventional natural gas production.
ADNOC plans to increase CCS by 500%, from 500,000 tonnes per annum to 5 million tonnes, and reduce emissions intensity by 25% by 2030. It intends to use CCS for enhanced oil recovery, which is not recognised as a valid carbon sequestration technology under the ACT methodology.
ADNOC has not announced a low-carbon transition plan beyond its one target for emissions intensity reduction. It provides limited information regarding its emissions reduction target. There is also no evidence that ADNOC has developed any renewable energy capacity. All of this makes it impossible to assess how the company plans to achieve its objectives.
ADNOC continues to explore for new resources and is expanding into unconventional gas. It plans to increase oil production by 46% by 2030, which will outweigh its target for reducing emissions intensity by 25% over the same time frame.
ADNOC’s past, present and future strategy can be summarised as doing more of the same but bigger and better. The company has been expanding oil and gas production as well as its downstream refining and petrochemicals capacity. There is no evidence that the company has achieved any reductions in emissions since 2014.
ADNOC’s actions are wholly inconsistent with the low-carbon transition. There is no evidence that it is engaging with the scale of change required by its 1.5°C pathway. The company has aggressive plans for growth in oil and gas production and shows no indication of changing its existing business model.