With the Republican National Convention set to wrap up on Thursday, and the Democratic National Convention getting ready to kick off in Philadelphia next week, one prominent oil executive is noting that the industry has fared better under Democrats than Republicans.
Scott Sheffield, CEO of Pioneer Natural Resources, says that he has noticed the trend during his 42 years in the business.
That may sound strange considering the two parties’ diverse platforms when it comes to energy. The Republican party is touting deregulation and has said that it does not support the Paris Climate Accords. Going a few steps further, the party has plans to defund renewable energy, and open public lands and the outer continental shelf to drilling. Additionally, the party also wants to leave the regulation of fracking and drilling to the states, and increase oil and gas exports.
Conversely, the Democrats are calling for an 80 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions and oppose the expansion of oil and gas production. They also want to phase down energy production on public lands. The party supports the inquiries into the alleged “climate change cover-up” by Exxon Mobil, and wants to see the nation using only renewable energy by the middle of the century. Related: Trump vs Clinton: How Will Energy Fare?
Comparing the two platforms, the GOP clearly appears to be the ally of the oil and gas industry. However, Sheffield says that under President Obama, Pioneer became the fifth largest company in the S&P in 2014. The company has since lost that slot due to the drop in oil prices.
During a visit to the Center for Strategic and International Studies, Sheffield said that one should not assume that the industry would automatically throw its support behind Donald Trump, who was officially named the GOP candidate for president Tuesday evening.
When asked, Sheffield said that he would support a carbon tax, if it were applied globally, adding that such a tax, if only levied on U.S. producers, would cause them to shift their business overseas. He added that the industry would work with the new president to educate him or her on the domestic oil industry.
By Lincoln Brown for Oilprice.com
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