Sasol

InfluenceMap Score
C-
Performance Band
59%
Organisation Score
53%
Relationship Score
Modifications to InfluenceMap Scoring
Sector:
Chemicals
Head​quarters:
Johannesburg, South Africa
Brands and Associated Companies
Southern Africa Energy
Official Web Site:
Wikipedia:

Climate Lobbying Overview: Sasol appears to take a mixed approach when engaging with climate policy. The company’s top-line communications on climate change appear broadly positive, and the company has supported ambitious GHG emissions policy in South Africa. However, Sasol has also opposed South Africa’s carbon tax, and continues to support a sustained role for natural gas in the energy mix.

Top-line Messaging on Climate Policy: Sasol appears broadly supportive of action on climate change in its top-line communications. In its 2021 Climate Change Report, published in September 2021, Sasol stated that countries and companies are required to contribute to halve global GHG emissions by 2030 and reach net-zero by 2050, in line with the IPCC. In the same 2021 report, Sasol supported the need for a “holistic legal framework” under the Climate Change Bill in South Africa, including carbon pricing measures. Sasol has consistently supported the Paris Agreement, advocating an increase in South Africa’s NDC ambition in its 2021 Climate Change Report.

Engagement with Climate-Related Regulations: Sasol shows mixed support for specific climate-related regulations. Notably, the company appears to have consistently opposed South Africa’s carbon tax, stating opposition to the policy in each of its CDP Climate Change Disclosures from 2018 to 2020. In its 2021 Climate Change Report, Sasol appeared to support the alignment of existing carbon tax and carbon budget policies in South Africa, but did not explicitly support the tax and appeared to support a more gradual implementation.

However, Sasol appears to support GHG emissions legislation in South Africa. In its 2021 Climate Change Report, Sasol called for a more ambitious 2030 GHG target in South Africa in line with recommendations by the newly established Presidential Climate Commission. In the same 2021 report, Sasol also supported legislation for carbon budgeting and the mandatory reporting of GHG emissions. In its 2020 CDP disclosure, the company appeared to support the use of mandatory carbon budgets under South Africa’s Climate Change Bill as an alternative to the carbon tax. In its 2019 Climate Change Report, Sasol also expressed support for South Africa’s 2030 energy efficiency target as part of the South African National Energy Efficiency Strategy.

Positioning on Energy Transition: Sasol does not appear to fully support the energy transition, advocating a sustained role for natural gas in the energy mix alongside renewables and green hydrogen.

Sasol’s messaging on coal appears to have improved in recent years. In April 2019, then-CEO Bongani Nqwababa appeared to support a long-term role for coal, predicting that Sasol’s mines would continue to produce coal supply up to at least 2050. However, Sasol’s 2021 Climate Change Report, published in September 2021, supported a shift from coal to renewables and natural gas. This report acknowledged natural gas as a “transition fuel” in a longer-term shift to zero-emission energy sources such as green hydrogen, and referenced the need for CCS and methane emissions abatement. However, there were no clear conditions around the deployment of these mitigation measures, or timelines for an overall reduction of gas in the energy mix. In a September 2021 press release, Sasol called for additional natural gas supply options and enabling infrastructure to grow the gas market in South Africa.

Sasol has consistently supported the development of green hydrogen and sustainable aviation fuels in South Africa in a series of press releases from March 2021 to September 2021. In its 2021 Climate Change Report, Sasol also advocated enabling policies and incentives for renewable energy and green hydrogen in South Africa, including a green hydrogen strategy and the lifting of limits on renewable energy.

Industry Association Governance: In its 2021 Climate Change Report, Sasol completed a full audit of its alignment with industry associations on climate policy. The audit disclosed some of its own climate policy positions and those of its industry associations, as well as governance processes around its management of misaligned groups. However, Sasol has failed to identify and take action on key industry associations engaged in lobbying activities misaligned with the Paris Agreement, such as the European Chemical Industry Council (CEFIC) and the Japan Chemical Industry Association. In addition, Sasol sits on the board of the Minerals Council South Africa and the regional board of Verband der Chemischen Industrie (VCI), both of which appear to be engaged negatively on climate policy. Sasol is also a member of Business Unity South Africa and Industry Task Team on Climate Change, which have mixed engagement but have lobbied against key climate policy in South Africa.

A detailed assessment of the company's industry association review can be found on our CA100+ webpage here.

QUERIES
DATA SOURCES
Main Web Site Social Media CDP Responses Legislative Consultations Media Reports CEO Messaging Financial Disclosures
Communication of Climate Science
2 1 NS NS NS NS NS
Alignment with IPCC on Climate Action
1 NS NA NS NS 1 NS
Supporting the Need for Regulations
1 NS NS NS NS NS 0
Support of UN Climate Process
1 1 NS NS NS 1 1
Transparency on Legislation
1 NA 1 NA NA NA NS
Carbon Tax
0 NS -2 NS -1 -2 -2
Emissions Trading
0 NS NS NS NS NS NS
Energy and Resource Efficiency
1 NS 2 NS NS NS NS
Renewable Energy
0 2 NS NS NS NS NS
Energy Transition & Zero Carbon Technologies
-1 0 NS NS -2 0 NS
GHG Emission Regulation
1 NS 1 NS -2 NS NS
Disclosure on Relationships
1 NS 1 NA NA NA NS
Strength of Relationship
STRONG
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
WEAK
 
49%
 
49%
 
62%
 
62%
 
53%
 
53%
 
60%
 
60%
 
49%
 
49%
 
57%
 
57%
 
44%
 
44%
 
67%
 
67%
 
45%
 
45%
 
47%
 
47%
 
44%
 
44%

How to Read our Relationship Score Map

In this section, we depict graphically the relationships the corporation has with trade associations, federations, advocacy groups and other third parties who may be acting on their behalf to influence climate change policy. Each of the columns above represents one relationship the corporation appears to have with such a third party. In these columns, the top, dark section represents the strength of the relationship the corporation has with the influencer. For example if a corporation's senior executive also held a key role in the trade association, we would deem this to be a strong relationship and it would be on the far left of the chart above, with the weaker ones to the right. Click on these grey shaded upper sections for details of these relationships. The middle section contains a link to the organization score details of the influencer concerned, so you can see the details of its climate change policy influence. Click on the middle sections for for details of the trade associations. The lower section contains the organization score of that influencer, the lower the more negatively it is influencing climate policy.