Biden has done everything to obstruct US oil and gas producers in the name of fighting climate change – while imploring Saudi Arabia, Russia and other producers to increase oil production to keep pump prices down.
BP’s latest review of energy use has been presented as positive developments in carbon reduction. However, the facts remain that fossil fuels continue to provide most of the world’s energy needs and that developing Asia is driving demand.
In the long term, US and EU green policies to reduce fossil fuel investments will increase the market share of Middle Eastern and Russian oil and gas producers. Global demand for fossil fuels shows no sign of slowing as developing countries aim to grow rapidly to meet the aspirations of their citizens.
The violence took place in a regional context marked by a sudden reversal in US policies towards Israel and the Middle East. There is every reason to believe the ceasefire will strengthen relations between Israel and moderate Gulf states.
Once the US relinquishes its role as a major competitor in oil and gas markets, the market share battles of the first quarter of 2020 will be just a bad memory. Meanwhile, the spectre of Iranian hegemony in the Gulf will concentrate the minds of moderate Sunni Gulf rulers and could drive further alignment with Israel.
If Biden cuts US oil and gas output in favour of renewables, as he is to do given his commitment to climate change goals, prices will improve for the other major producers. But if sanctions against Iran are dropped, even lower prices await.
Given Asian corporate governance issues, the West’s stakeholder campaign merely offers gleeful Asian tycoons new opportunities to financially underperform. Meanwhile, CEOs who support the campaign have been found to furlough staff and cut benefits amid the Covid-19 crisis while paying dividends to shareholders
BP and Shell’s plans for massive cuts to their oil and gas budgets amid a shift towards renewables have sparked worry among Middle East oil producers. However, surging demand among developing countries for cheap, reliable energy sources such as oil, gas and coal will keep the industry afloat for decades to come.
Moscow’s refusal to abide with Opec’s proposal to cut oil production and Riyadh’s decision to discount prices caused a rout in oil prices that will hit producers everywhere.
Banks are rushing to end the funding of new coal power plants, based on corporate social responsibility (CSR)