An Investor Enquiry:
How Much Big Oil Spends on Climate Lobbying

An InfluenceMap report

April 2016

See coverage in the Huffington Post, Bloomberg, the Indpendent (UK), Sydney Morning Herald, the Guardian.

See our content deployed in the

Investors are interested in the use of shareholder funds by corporations to delay and obstruct climate legislation. So far in 2016 alone, there have been over 15 shareholder resolutions filed by investors in the US with fossil fuel companies on the issue of influence over climate policy. We attempt to gain an order of magnitude estimate of a few, key representative oil and gas companies and trade associations to give investors and other interested parties a feel for the amounts of shareholder funds being used for this purpose. We find, estimating conservatively, that these five entities spent almost $115m per year combined on obstructive climate influencing activities, with the bulk by the American Petroleum Institute ($65m), ExxonMobil ($27m) and Shell ($22m).

Extrapolated over the entire fossil fuel and other industrial sectors beyond, it is not hard to consider that this obstructive climate policy lobbying spending may be in the order of $500m annually.

About InfluenceMap

InfluenceMap is a non-profit think tank providing objective and evidence-based analysis of how companies and financial institutions are impacting the climate and biodiversity crises. Our company profiles and other content are used extensively by a range of actors including investors, the media, NGOs, policymakers, and the corporate sector. InfluenceMap does not advocate or take positions on government policy. All our assessments are made against accepted benchmarks, such as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Our content is open source and free to view and use (


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