Biden’s Energy Policy ‘Will Be Workable for Us,’ Oxy CEO Says (6:11 p.m.)
“I’m not as worried as some people are” about U.S. President-elect Joe Biden’s prospective energy policy, Occidental Petroleum Corp. Chief Executive Officer Vicki Hollub said. Energy companies will need to work with Biden’s administration on solutions to challenges of climate change. His staff understand carbon capture, she said. Biden’s energy policy “will be workable for us.”
IEA’s Faith Birol Says, Don’t Call Peak Oil Demand Yet (2:40 p.m.)
Fatih Birol, head of the International Energy Agency, said it was misleading for anyone to claim that oil demand had already peaked. If economies recover from the pandemic quickly, consumption of crude could rise above pre-Covid levels, he said. In a separate interview with Bloomberg TV, he said President-elect Joe Biden will strongly push renewable energy in the U.S. — especially solar and wind. Solar is now the cheapest source of power in most of the world, according to Birol.
Vitol Sees ‘Difficult’ Months Ahead, Then Oil at as Much as $50: CEO (12:37 p.m.)
Vitol Group, the world’s largest independent oil trader, sees a “difficult few months ahead” for crude demand, but it expects prices to recover around the middle of next year to between the high $40s and $50 per barrel, Chief Executive Officer Russell Hardy said. Drawdowns of global oil inventories will quicken into the second quarter, assuming that OPEC+ delays its plan to ease output cuts in January. The Biden presidency will be bullish for oil, due to higher costs of capital and more regulation of fracking in the U.S. The potential return of Iranian crude to the market is an issue for the second half of 2021, he said.
Former Gov. Walker leads effort to take over Alaska’s gas pipeline megaproject
Rashah McChesney, Alaska’s Energy Desk, November 9, 2020
For more than 40 years, the state has tried and failed to bring natural gas from Alaska’s North Slope to market. Now, a new private venture — formed by some familiar players — wants to make an attempt. Former Gov. Bill Walker led a press conference on Monday with the group who call themselves Alaska Gasline & LNG, LLC. Walker is a man with a mission. He has spent decades working to bring the megaproject into existence. And, much like he has in the past, he emphasized what it could bring to the state — jobs, money, cheap energy. “You know we’re not out to get rich off of this project, we want to make it happen,” he said. Walker was joined by the man he tapped to lead the state’s gasline corporation during his administration — Keith Meyer. As the state’s highest-paid employee, Meyer ran the Alaska Gasline Development Corporation for two years before he was ousted after Gov. Mike Dunleavy was elected.
Learn more about the effort at aglng.com
Opinion: China controls rare minerals America needs for the future
John Adams, The Detroit News, November 8, 2020\
Americans won’t soon forget the lessons of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our nation saw firsthand the pitfalls that come from being overly reliant on imports from a strategic competitor like China. As the coronavirus swept the world, supplies of lifesaving drugs and medical devices were suddenly cut off. In response, Congress is now exploring ways to bring critical supply chains back home. Regardless of who wins the election in November, reshoring U.S. industry and reducing our over-reliance on imports must be a priority.
Arguably one of the most troubling areas of America’s growing dependence on imports is the metals and minerals needed to manufacture 21st century technologies. The key industries expected to lead global innovation — everything from robotics and 5G networks to solar panels and electric vehicles — will require a wide array of minerals and rare earth metals. However, China has already become the world’s dominant supplier for many of these critical resources.
Executive Order Ping Pong
Robert Verbruggen, National Review, November 9, 2020
Joe Biden has been declared the president-elect, but his chances of getting major legislation through Congress look poor. The Democrats’ margin in the House is slimmer than expected, and even if Democrats win both runoffs in Georgia, the Senate will be a tie. In their best-case scenario, then, Senate Democrats will need to unanimously back any legislation they want to pass without Republican support, with Vice President Kamala Harris breaking the tie. In their worst-case scenario, they won’t be able to do squat without bringing two Senate Republicans on board.
Fortunately for Biden, though, Congress rarely feels like doing its job anyway. Over the years it has simply delegated enormous policymaking powers to the executive branch. So, while he hopes for better results in the 2022 midterms, Biden can occupy himself with another round of executive-order ping-pong, swatting back much of what Trump accomplished and serving some new initiatives of his own as well.
CLIMATE CHANGE CONVERSATIONS
From the Washington Examiner, Daily on Energy:
OIL AND GAS GROUP EMBRACES ESG INVESTING: A major oil and gas trade group is embracing sustainable and socially conscious investing metrics to woo investors increasingly focused on issues like climate change.
The Independent Petroleum Association of America, which represents thousands of small- and medium-sized oil and gas producers, recently launched an ESG Center focused on environmental, social, and governance metrics that investors are increasingly applying when deciding where to put their money.
The ESG Center is meant to be a resource hub for IPAA’s member companies, so they can start to set up their own ESG programs and boost their standing with investors using those metrics.
Climate activists, however, are skeptical of IPAA’s push on ESG. The oil and gas group’s fight against climate regulations, such as methane limits, undermines its credibility, they say.
More details in a story for this week’s Washington Examiner magazine.