Chevron CEO John S. Watson Calls for an Energy Renaissance
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Written by Sharise Cruz
In the wake of recent discoveries of new oil and natural gas resources, Chevron CEO John S. Watson has been speaking out on the importance of less regulation and more access to domestic resources.
Watson, who has served as Chevron’s CEO and Chairman of the Board since January 1, 2010, met with the Greater Houston Partnership last month to discuss a potential U.S. “energy renaissance” that could reduce dependence on foreign oil while creating thousands of jobs in the private sector.
Watson’s background is in agricultural economics and business administration and he joined Chevron in 1980 as a financial analyst. In 2000, Watson led the company’s integration following the Chevron-Texaco merger.
In addition to his CEO and Chairman duties, Watson serves as Chairman of the Board of the American Petroleum Institute and on the Board of Directors of Caltex, the Business Council, the Business Roundtable, JPMorgan International Council, the American Society of Corporate Executives, Animal Rescue Foundation and the National Petroleum Council.
Watson advocates for rational and fair tax policies as well as the opening of more of the U.S. coastline to drilling in order to provide jobs and increased energy security.
“If I were to give advice, it would be pretty simple,” Watson said in Houston. “It would be stop trying to create jobs and start trying to create an environment for the private sector to create jobs.”
Earlier this year, Watson spoke on behalf of the oil and gas industry to the U.S. Senate during hearing of the Committee on Finance on “Oil and Gas Tax Incentives and Rising Energy Prices.”
Watson’s point was simple: he feels the industry pays its fair share in taxes and that large and small energy producers should be treated equitably.
“I am an advocate for developing all forms of energy and using energy more wisely. But it is wrong to increase taxes on oil and gas companies to subsidize other forms of energy,” Watson said in his speech. “This is also likely to have serious unintended consequences for production, jobs and tax revenues. Singling out five companies because of their size is even more troubling. Such measures are anticompetitive and discriminatory. After all, our five companies are providing the technical, operating and managerial expertise that is allowing the global energy industry to operate at the forefront of energy development.”
“I’m proud to lead a 132-year-old American company,” Watson said. “I’m proud of the vital role we play in our economy. And I’m proud that our profits allow us to make significant investments in our communities and in the long-term health of our country.”
Hydrostor receives $4m funding for A-CAES facility in Canada
Hydrostor has received $4m funding to develop a 300-500MW Advanced Compressed Air Energy Storage (A-CAES) facility in Canada.
The funding will be used to complete essential engineering and planning, and enable Hydrostor to plan construction.
The project will be modeled on Hydrostor’s commercially operating Goderich storage facility, providing up to 12 hours of energy storage.
Hydrostor’s A-CAES system supports Canada’s green economic transition by designing, building, and operating emissions-free energy storage facilities, and employing people, suppliers, and technologies from the oil and gas sector.
The Honorable Seamus O’Regan, Jr. Minister of Natural Resources, said: “Investing in clean technology will lower emissions and increase our competitiveness. This is how we get to net zero by 2050.”
A-CAES has the potential to lower greenhouse gas emissions by enabling the transition to a cleaner and more flexible electricity grid. Specifically, the low-impact and cost-effective technology will reduce the use of fossil fuels and will provide reliable and bankable energy storage solutions for utilities and regulators, while integrating renewable energy for sustainable growth.
Curtis VanWalleghem, Hydrostor’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “We are grateful for the federal government’s support of our long duration energy storage solution that is critical to enabling the clean energy transition. This made-in-Canada solution, with the support of NRCan and Sustainable Development Technology Canada, is ready to be widely deployed within Canada and globally to lower electricity rates and decarbonize the electricity sector."
The Rosamond A-CAES 500MW Project is under advanced development and targeting a 2024 launch. It is designed to turn California’s growing solar and wind resources into on-demand peak capacity while allowing for closure of fossil fuel generating stations.
Hydrostor closed US$37 million (C$49 million) in growth financing in September 2019.