Over the past century, oil has shaped both our lives and the world we live in. Is a trillion dollar industry that has never really been challenged ready to embrace a new world? of electric vehicles and renewable energies? Let the VOX network explain itself.
We have never known a time when the world did not covet oil. The abundance, energy density, and fluidity of this so-called “black gold” made it an easy choice for powering everything from cars and ships to airplanes; even our heating. According to the Energy Administration Association, an estimated 80 million barrels of oil are produced every day. Oil has brought astronomical wealth to companies and countries, especially in the Middle East where five of the oil producing countries now belong to the 25 richest countries in the world.
Yet thanks to initiatives such as the 2015 Paris Climate Conference where, for the first time, 195 countries signed a legally binding agreement to reduce climate emissions, oil companies are under increasing pressure. Not just to reduce their significant carbon emissions; but to leave all the oil in the ground, in favor of cleaner renewable energy.
Unsurprisingly, the oil companies are not yet ready to ditch the dirty fossil fuels that have made them rich. For the sake of their shareholders, they are reluctant to waste the trillions of dollars that have been invested in extracting, extracting and refining oil, while oil-producing countries also do not like it. idea of a reshuffle of power.
This is why oil companies are so invested in political lobbying and why their recent public relations offensives have often been called “greenwashing”.
Take the example of BP, a limited company whose origins date back to the Anglo-Persian oil company of 1908. Today, BP is one of the seven oil and gas “super-majors” of the world and is responsible for the production of $ 3.8 million. barrels of oil per day. In a recent announcement, BP pledged to reduce its oil and gas production by 40% by 2030. Yet by cutting, the company is in effect “selling” some of its oil and gas fields. less profitable to other producers, resulting in very little displacement of production or global emissions.
BP has also said it wants to increase its annual low-carbon investment from $ 500 million in 2019 to $ 5 billion by 2030. That’s a substantial increase until you realize BP is investing 70 billion dollars in its fossil fuel and non-renewable energy business. the next FIVE years.
BP has also successfully lobbied the Trump administration to open up Alaska’s natural reserves to oil drilling and continues to partner with Russian oil producer Rosneft, a company known for drilling in the Arctic region. And BP is not alone …
Clearly, the shift from yesterday’s to tomorrow’s energy system is fraught with business opportunities, but until big oil is encouraged to accelerate that transition – either through strict government policy that restricts supply. in fossil fuels, either from consumers pushing for more green procurement, and from ICE vehicles to electric vehicles – oil companies will continue to produce oil with the desire to demonstrate value to shareholders.