After WPC 2000-1 Industry's spirit of compromise

A troubling coincidence this month maps out a difficult future for the oil and gas industry. While speakers at the World Petroleum Conference in Calgary tip-toed around political issues under threat of physical protest, a genuine political riot was taking shape in the US. Gasoline prices there had pierced the limit of popular patience.At the WPC, oil company executives extolled "corporate social responsibility" and "wider responsibilities than just to shareholders" as though the industry needed to be converted. In fact, no one disputes those values. So why the lectures?In Calgary, with demonstrators held at a comfortable distance by Canadian security police, there were calls for "dialogue...

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