ConocoPhillips's Mulva: Natural gas a 'job-creation machine'

Paula Dittrick
OGJ Senior Staff Writer

HOUSTON, Sept. 27 -- Growing natural gas consumption can help drive US economic recovery and job creation, ConocoPhillips Chairman and Chief Executive Officer James Mulva said Sept. 27 at Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy.

“Natural gas in an overlooked job-creation machine,” Mulva said. “Let’s crank it up and step on the accelerator.” He spoke during a 2-day Baker Institute conference at which numerous papers were released that analyze the market consequences of carbon management policies worldwide.

Calling for a “balanced energy policy,” Mulva called upon US lawmakers to develop a comprehensive energy policy “that allows all sources to compete on the basis of abundance, cost, efficiency, and environmental merit.” He said, “We don’t have that today…. Current policies stack the deck in favor of coal and renewable sources.”

Energy from renewable sources cannot be provided fast enough to instantly replace the energy currently provided by fossil fuels, he said.

The oil and gas industry currently supports 9.2 million US jobs, Mulva said, and he acknowledged that all energy sources will be needed in the future. “So yes, bring on the green jobs. But in doing so, don’t destroy the real jobs that we have today in the oil and gas industry.”

He recommended state and US lawmakers carefully examine renewable electricity standards, noting that some states require utilities to use renewable sources for part of their power supply. “Washington is considering a national standard,” Mulva said. “Unfortunately, renewable sources are quite expensive.”

The Baker Institute supports research and development to lower the cost of renewable energy, Mulva said, adding he agrees with that approach but he resists energy policy that mandates the use of renewable energy.

“Ideally, a balanced policy would create an attractive investment climate for gas,” Mulva said. “But oil and gas is a heavily taxed industry through income taxes, lease bonus payments, royalties, and severance taxes. And, the administration has targeted us for new taxes.”

Ideally, US energy policy would enable the market to determine the best use of gas, he said. “For example, to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, many in Washington support the use of compressed natural gas in vehicles. But gas could do more good in the industrial and power sectors. We believe we could get larger reductions in the future from using plug-in hybrid-electric and all-electric vehicles. The electricity would come from gas-fired generating plants.”

Tradeoffs seen
In an executive summary of numerous reports issued on Sept. 27, the Baker Institute said that “business-as-usual, market-related trends might propel the United States toward greater oil and natural gas self-sufficiency over the next 20 years."

Currently, the US vehicle fleet involves 250 million oil-fueled vehicles, the studies said. Recently adopted improvements in car fuel efficiency standards are expected to cut US oil use by 3 million b/d by 2050, and proposals to replace 30% of the vehicle fleet with electric vehicles by 2050 could cut oil usage by another 2.5 million b/d, the studies said.

Under this electric car scenario, US GHG emissions would be cut by 7.4% by 2050 because more electric cars would encourage more coal-fired electricity generation unless there also was a mandated carbon cap system, the executive summary said.

Baker Institute researchers also said putting a price on carbon dioxide, imposed by either a carbon tax or a cap-and-trade system, could increase electricity costs and, in the short term, mean a greater reliance on oil imports if the development of US oil resources were to become less cost competitive.

“Analysis of the impact on US energy markets of a cap-and-trade system indicates that the price of carbon could be highly unpredictable, depending on rules for offset programs or availability of carbon capture and sequestration technology,” the executive summary said. “All cap-and-trade scenarios ultimately lead to higher US electricity prices; the more binding the policies, the more burdensome is the electricity bill for the policy.”

Contact Paula Dittrick at paulad@ogjonline.com.

Related Articles

Alaska LNG project partners file resource reports with FERC

02/12/2015 A series of draft environmental and socioeconomic reports for the Alaska LNG project have been submitted to the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commis...

Chevron, BP, ConocoPhillips join to explore, appraise gulf leases

02/09/2015 Chevron Corp. subsidiary Chevron USA Inc., BP PLC unit BP Exploration & Production Inc., and ConocoPhillips Co. have pledged to work together t...

ConocoPhillips revises down $2 billion from budget

01/29/2015 ConocoPhillips has shed an additional $2 billion from its capital expenditures for 2015, decreasing total spending to $11.5 billion from the previo...

Chevron, BP, ConocoPhillips join to explore, appraise Gulf of Mexico leases

01/28/2015 Chevron Corp. subsidiary Chevron USA Inc., BP PLC unit BP Exploration & Production Inc., and ConocoPhillips Co. have pledged to work together t...

Conoco's Lance calls for repeal of US crude oil export ban

01/26/2015 The US crude export ban that was imposed in 1975 should be repealed 40 years later to ensure the US oil and gas renaissance continues, ConocoPhilli...

For the US economy, a falling oil price has drawbacks, too

01/05/2015

Cheer in the US about an economic lift from falling oil prices needs qualification.

ConocoPhillips slashes 2015 capital budget

12/22/2014 ConocoPhillips has elected to reduce its 2015 capital budget to $13.5 billion, down 20% compared with this year's budget. The news comes on the hee...

ConocoPhillips slashes 2015 capital budget

12/08/2014 ConocoPhillips has elected to reduce its 2015 capital budget to $13.5 billion, down 20% compared with this year’s budget. The news comes on the hee...

BLM issues final SEIS for Greater Mooses Tooth project in NPR-A

10/30/2014 The US Bureau of Land Management released its final supplemental environmental impact statement for the proposed Greater Mooses Tooth (GMT1) oil an...
White Papers

Pipeline Integrity: Best Practices to Prevent, Detect, and Mitigate Commodity Releases

Commodity releases can have catastrophic consequences, so ensuring pipeline integrity is crucial for p...
Sponsored by

AVEVA’s Digital Asset Approach - Defining a new era of collaboration in capital projects and asset operations

There is constant, intensive change in the capital projects and asset life cycle management. New chall...
Sponsored by

Transforming the Oil and Gas Industry with EPPM

With budgets in the billions, timelines spanning years, and life cycles extending over decades, oil an...
Sponsored by

Asset Decommissioning in Oil & Gas: Transforming Business

Asset intensive organizations like Oil and Gas have their own industry specific challenges when it com...
Sponsored by

Squeezing the Green: How to Cut Petroleum Downstream Costs and Optimize Processing Efficiencies with Enterprise Project Portfolio Management Solutions

As the downstream petroleum industry grapples with change in every sector and at every level, includin...
Sponsored by

7 Steps to Improve Oil & Gas Asset Decommissioning

Global competition and volatile markets are creating a challenging business climate for project based ...
Sponsored by

The impact of aging infrastructure in process manufacturing industries

Process manufacturing companies in the oil and gas, utilities, chemicals and natural resource industri...
Sponsored by

What is System Level Thermo-Fluid Analysis?

This paper will explain some of the fundamentals of System Level Thermo-Fluid Analysis and demonstrate...
Available Webcasts


Cognitive Solutions for Upstream Oil and Gas

When Fri, Jun 12, 2015

The oil & gas sector is under pressure on all sides. Reserves are limited and it’s becoming increasingly expensive to find and extract new resources. Margins are already being squeezed in an industry where one wrong decision can cost millions. Analyzing data used in energy exploration can save millions of dollars as we develop ways to predict where and how to extract the world’s massive energy reserves.

This session with IBM Subject Matter Experts will discuss how IBM Cognitive Solutions contribute to the oil and gas industry using predictive analytics and cognitive computing, as well as real time streaming for exploration and drilling.

register:WEBCAST


The Alternative Fuel Movement: Four Need-to-Know Excise Tax Complexities

When Thu, Jun 4, 2015

Discussion on how to approach, and ultimately embrace, the alternative fuel market by pulling back the veil on excise tax complexities. Taxes may be an aggravating part of daily operations, but their accuracy is crucial in your path towards business success.

register:WEBCAST



On Demand

Prevention, Detection and Mitigation of pipeline leaks in the modern world

Thu, Apr 30, 2015

Preventing, detecting and mitigating leaks or commodity releases from pipelines are a top priority for all pipeline companies. This presentation will look at various aspects related to preventing, detecting and mitigating pipeline commodity releases from a generic and conceptual point of view, while at the same time look at the variety of offerings available from Schneider Electric to meet some of the requirements associated with pipeline integrity management. 

register:WEBCAST


Global LNG: Adjusting to New Realities

Fri, Mar 20, 2015

Oil & Gas Journal’s March 20, 2015, webcast will look at how global LNG trade will be affected over the next 12-24 months by falling crude oil prices and changing patterns and pressures of demand. Will US LNG production play a role in balancing markets? Or will it add to a growing global oversupply of LNG for markets remote from easier natural gas supply? Will new buyers with marginal credit, smaller requirements, or great need for flexibility begin to look attractive to suppliers? How will high-cost, mega-projects in Australia respond to new construction cost trends?

register:WEBCAST


Emerson Micro Motion Videos

Careers at TOTAL

Careers at TOTAL - Videos

More than 600 job openings are now online, watch videos and learn more!

 

Click Here to Watch

Other Oil & Gas Industry Jobs

Search More Job Listings >>
Stay Connected