At the World Petroleum Congress in Calgary, oil industry executives and government officials expressed their support for emissions reduction through carbon capture and storage. However, they also cautioned against the destruction of oil demand. Attendees, including Aramco’s CEO, the chief executive of Exxon, and the Saudi energy minister, voiced concerns about the feasibility of transitioning away from oil too quickly.
Exxon’s CEO, Darren Woods, emphasized the need for continued investment in the oil industry, regardless of the level of oil demand. He argued that without sufficient investment, supply shortages and high prices could become prevalent. Woods’ viewpoint is supported by the current supply shortages and high prices experienced in the industry.
Some advocates for transitioning away from oil call for governments to target oil demand instead of supply, in order to reduce hydrocarbon production and emissions. However, Aramco’s Amin Nasser, echoing Woods’ sentiments, warned against such actions. Nasser argued that stable investment in oil and gas is necessary to prevent crises and to avoid a regression to the increased use of coal and other cheap energy sources.
Alberta’s Premier, Danielle Smith, encapsulated the industry’s perspective by stating that while they are transitioning away from emissions, they are not transitioning away from oil and natural gas.
It remains evident that the oil industry acknowledges the need for emissions reduction and supports carbon capture technology. However, there is a shared apprehension about the potentially detrimental consequences of abruptly reducing oil demand. The focus continues to be on maintaining stable investment in the oil and gas sector to ensure a reliable supply of energy while simultaneously working towards decarbonization efforts.