Occidental Petroleum sets low-carbon business targets for CEO’s bonus

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Occidental Petroleum sets low-carbon business targets for CEO's bonus

HOUSTON, March 26 (Reuters) – Occidental Petroleum Corp
will tie results achieved in the company’s low-carbon
business to its chief executive’s cash bonus this year, the oil
and gas producer said in a securities filing on Friday.

Occidental is setting ambitious climate targets and trying
to turn its low-carbon unit into a profitable business after it
cut jobs and output last year when the coronavirus pandemic
hammered global energy demand.

The company increased the weight assigned to its emissions
reductions and low-carbon ventures unit to 30% of CEO Vicki
Hollub’s target bonus, according to its proxy filing.

Hollub’s target compensation for the year was reduced by 29%
from its pre-COVID-19 levels, the filing said.

Occidental’s carbon capture business could be worth between
$2 billion and $5 billion, according to Mizuho Securities
analyst Daniel Boyd.

The company before year-end will set medium-term net
emissions reduction targets for sometime around 2030, it said in
the filing. The targets come after a shareholder proposal and
discussions with the shareholder activist group Follow This
earlier this year, the company said.

Occidental in November set a target to reach net-zero
emissions in its operations before 2040.

It loaded up on debt in 2019 to acquire an oil rival, but
has been an early mover among U.S. oil producers in setting
net-zero emissions goals. Last year it created the low-carbon
group to commercialize pulling carbon dioxide out of the
atmosphere through a process known as direct air capture.

Occidental shares closed 4% higher at $27.76 on Friday. They
are up nearly 60% so far this year as oil prices and demand
improve from pandemic-driven lows.
(Reporting by Jennifer Hiller and Gary McWilliams in Houston
Editing by Chris Reese and Matthew Lewis)