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Irina Slav

Irina Slav

Irina is a writer for the U.S.-based Divergente LLC consulting firm with over a decade of experience writing on the oil and gas industry.

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Chevron: We Will Survive Under Any Climate Change Scenario

Chevron building

In its second climate change report Chevron said its business is resilient to a number of scenarios the company has looked into, despite the push towards more renewable energy and less oil and gas.

The company notes that most forecasts for global energy demand agree that demand for fossil fuel-generated energy will continue to rise in the coming decades, which means Chevron’s main products will not be forced out of the market by renewables anytime soon.

The International Energy Agency’s (IEA) worst-case scenario for Big Oil, Chevron notes, sees fossil fuels’ share in the global energy mix falling from 54 percent to 48 percent by 2040. That’s not really a major fall, which is why Chevron is so confident that its business will not be affected by the climate change fight.

At the same time, Chevron said, it is investing in improving operational efficiencies to make them less energy-intensive, investing in methane emission control and in developing low-carbon technologies.

“Energy transitions can take decades, as the amount of time required to turn over the current consuming capital stock and redirect investment to meet global energy demand depends on the asset’s service life,” the report notes, adding that “Oil and gas have a diverse set of end uses. In some uses, like aviation, marine, freight and petrochemicals, there are few, if any, cost-effective and scalable alternatives to oil.” Related: U.S. Sanctions Could Be The Final Nail In The Coffin For Venezuelan Oil

This may change at some point, as alternatives to everything fossil fuel-related are being sought constantly. Then again, it will take time. Until that time, Chevron’s shareholders have no great reason to worry, the report’s message runs.

The supermajor is not even particularly concerned with lawsuits that several municipalities and cities in the U.S. have filed against Big Oil. Chevron is named in two lawsuits, one by San Francisco and one by Oakland. Its stance: if Chevron should answer for climate change, so should carmakers, car buyers, and users of every single piece of equipment that requires fuel to operate.

By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com

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  • Lee James on March 02 2018 said:
    I can't disagree with a lot of Chevron's conclusions about our oil dependency. But I think the company does not fully appreciate the downsides of the world's dependency on oil. Personal and planetary health is the aspect most acknowledged. I think compromised national security and world peace are underappreciated.

    Oil literally fuels undesirable governments like those of Russia and Iran. We spend big to keep oil sea lanes open. Much better for countries to require less energy and to produce clean energy at home.

    Chevron is a good corporate citizen for enabling our addiction. But I give them low marks for appreciating what the world really needs to do in terms of the big picture. Shell, Statoil, and BP are on the right track. Think energy company and not just petroleum.
  • zipsprite on March 03 2018 said:
    Gotta love these forecasts:

    "fossil fuels’ share in the global energy mix falling from 54 percent to 48 percent by 2040"

    If that's the best we can do by 2040, civilization as we know it will be over, and not in a happy ending kind of way. You're talking about global warming in a runaway/feedback loop that is unimaginable to us today. These forecasts always leave out the global warming part of the picture, and instead focus on all the money to be made in oil. Party on!

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