Big Oil Clashes Over Fossil Fuel Future
Charles Kennedy, OilPrice.Com, March 2, 2021
Executives from major oil companies clashed over the prospects of oil and gas for the future at the first virtual edition of the CERAWeek conference in Houston.
While BP’s Bernard Looney and Shell’s Ben van Beurden boasted about their shift away from their core business and into renewable energy, Baker Hughes, Hess Corp., and Spain’s Repsol were among those believing that fossil fuels have yet to leave the scene for good, the Houston Chronicle’s Paul Takahashi reports.
“We’ve been an oil and gas company for 112 years, and I think this is a moment where we do have to reinvent the company,” BP’s Looney said. “We decided to really embrace that energy transition, more as a massive opportunity and not look at it as some sort of threat to our core business.”
“Hydrocarbons are still going to be essential for providing energy to the world, especially in the near term,” Baker Hughes’ Lorenzo Simonelli said, echoing an earlier statement that “There is no scenario where hydrocarbons disappear,” as expressed in his opening speech at the Baker Hughes annual meeting held last month.
As per the Houston Chronicle’s report, Hess Corp. and Carlyle International Partners shared their belief that demand for oil and gas will, in fact, rise over the next ten years despite the international push towards cleaner energy sources.
Opposing Natural Gas Pipelines Means Opposing Natural Gas Users
Benjamin Decker, Real Clear Energy, March 1, 2021
With politics governing energy and climate policy, people must remain central. Half of U.S. homes currently rely on natural gas for heating, while over half of food services and 38% of the energy generated nationwide for schools, hospitals, and communities require natural gas. When pipelines are blocked, development is restricted. When natural gas is prevented from reaching the market, vulnerable people are harmed.
The harm caused by ill-conceived energy policy is borne chiefly by low-income earners, state program beneficiaries, union workers, and future generations. Restricted energy access can even penalize this group twice: through higher utility bills and blackouts.
The National Mining Association (NMA) today released new polling showing that the vast majority of voters want to see the Biden administration and Congress support domestic mining projects to create jobs, secure our supply chains and reduce reliance on foreign countries for minerals we could be mining here at home.
“This is about as clear a signal from voters as they come,” said Rich Nolan, NMA president and CEO. “These numbers show that the state of the economy, repercussions from the pandemic and our energy future have sharpened voter concerns about where the raw materials that are essential for the stability of our economy, security and future are coming from. The president’s recent supply chain executive order suggests that the administration shares those concerns and policymakers in Congress should take note.”
Details from the polling follow:
- 87 percent of voters believe that, within the President’s “Buy American” initiative, it is important that the material supply chains many industries depend on – such as copper or lithium for electric vehicles – are also sourced from the U.S.
- 88 percent of voters believe it is important for policymakers to focus on supporting responsible domestic mining here in the U.S. to create American jobs.
- 87 percent of voters believe it is important for policymakers to focus on supporting responsible domestic mining here in the U.S. to support U.S. economic recovery.
- 85 percent of voters believe it is important for policymakers to focus on supporting responsible domestic mining here in the U.S. to secure our supply chains.
- 84 percent of voters believe it is important for policymakers to focus on supporting responsible domestic mining here in the U.S. to reduce our reliance on foreign countries for mineral imports.
- 70 percent of voters are concerned that new land withdrawals currently being considered would occur at the same time that mineral demands are set to soar to support advanced technologies, forcing the United States to turn to geopolitical rivals for minerals we could be sourcing here at home.
Additional COVID-19 cases confirmed in Alaska Capitol, but legislative leaders say work will go on
James Brooks, Anchorage Daily News, March 1, 2021
Five people have tested positive for COVID-19 within the Alaska Capitol since Wednesday and 20 have been quarantined, but Alaska lawmakers on Monday said they intend for the Legislature to continue its work on schedule.
Tok Republican Rep. Mike Cronk tested positive last week, and two of Cronk’s aides tested positive on Sunday.
Two additional positive cases have also been reported, one identified Monday morning and another over the weekend, according to Jessica Geary, executive director of the Legislative Affairs Agency, the nonpartisan organization that operates the Capitol complex on behalf of the Legislature.
Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy also tested positive on Wednesday.
Thirteen of Alaska’s 60 state lawmakers were absent or excused from House and Senate floor sessions at the Capitol on Monday, although some of Monday’s absences were due to travel rather than quarantine. Legislators typically return from Juneau to their home districts during weekends for personal business and to meet with constituents.
The state House canceled two days of meetings last week because of the first positive test, but Speaker of the House Louise Stutes, R-Kodiak, said she does not expect Monday’s absences to affect the Legislature’s work.
Major oil lobbying group to endorse emissions pricing: report
Zack Budryk, The Hill, March 2, 2021
The American Petroleum Institute, one of the nation’s most influential energy lobbying groups, is poised to come out in favor of setting prices for carbon emissions, according to a draft statement obtained by the Wall Street Journal.
In the draft, the organization calls emissions pricing a move that would “lead to the most economic paths to achieve the ambitions of the Paris Agreement,” the WSJ reported.
“API supports economy-wide carbon pricing as the primary government climate policy instrument to reduce CO2 emissions while helping keep energy affordable, instead of mandates or prescriptive regulatory action,” the draft statement says, according to the newspaper.