analyze shells enviromental policy

Since the early 1990s, Shell’s reputation has been battered by corporate social responsibility problems such as the Brent Spar controversy and the Ken SaroWiwa trial in Nigeria. (Ken Saro-Wiwa was the environmentalist who was hanged and whose death some attributed in part to Shell.) Shell gradually realized that dismissing environmental and social issues could seriously hurt its business. It started to develop a company-wide environmental policy in the late 1990s, in spite of its heritage of being a rather decentralized firm with highly autonomous operating companies. As a result of this autonomy, environmental management approaches at Shell’s international subsidiaries varied substantially and depended on the direction chosen by subsidiary managers. Subsidiary discretion led to inconsistencies, especially between operations in developed and developing countries. As a multinational energy firm with 108,000 people operating in more than 130 countries, Shell had traditionally been viewed as being at the forefront of modern, corporate environmental management, but this record did not prevent the firm from becoming subject to substantial criticism in the 1990s.28

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