Oil and natural gas companies are America’s top investors in zero- and low-greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) technologies, a new study released by API claims.
“America’s oil and natural gas companies have invested more to reduce greenhouse gas emissions than the federal government and almost as much as all other industries combined,” says API Vice President for Policy and Economic Analysis Kyle Isakower. “The industry is aggressively pursuing new technologies and game-changing energy research that will fuel innovation for years to come. These investments not only lower carbon emissions, they create jobs and advance America’s technological competiveness.”
The study by T2 and Associates examined investments in GHG mitigation technologies from 2000 through 2012. During that period, the U.S. oil and natural gas industry directly invested approximately $81 billion in GHG mitigation technologies. Other U.S. industries invested an estimated $91.2 billion, and the federal government invested an estimated $79.7 billion.
Oil and natural gas industry expenditures on GHG mitigation more than double – to $165.4 billion – when the total includes shale investments, which have unlocked an abundance of affordable natural gas, allowing America to supplant more carbon-intensive fuels.
“U.S. carbon dioxide emissions are at the lowest level in nearly twenty years, driven down significantly by advancements in the oil and natural gas industry,” said Isakower. “With these investments, the oil and natural gas industry is supplying the energy our economy needs, while helping to promote a future where alternatives play a larger and larger role. This is a true all-of-the-above approach, and it will continue to yield environmental benefits, but only if misguided tax policies don’t stand in the way of energy innovation.”
During the study period, the oil and natural gas industry was responsible for approximately $11.4 billion, or one out of every six dollars, invested in non-hydrocarbon resources, including wind, solar, geothermal, and biomass technologies.
The industry also has adopted methods to reuse excess heat from refineries and permanently sequester CO2. From 2011 to 2012, these and other investments allowed the U.S. oil and natural gas industry to directly reduce emissions of greenhouse gases by the equivalent of 53.6 million metric tons of CO2 – equal to taking 10.8 million cars off of the road.
About the American Petroleum Institute
API is a national trade association that represents all segments of America’s technology-driven oil and natural gas industry. Its more than 550 members – including large integrated companies, exploration and production, refining, marketing, pipeline, and marine businesses, and service and supply firms – provide most of the nation’s energy.
The industry also supports 9.8 million U.S. jobs and 8 percent of the U.S. economy, delivers $85 million a day in revenue to our government, and, since 2000, has invested over $2 trillion in U.S. capital projects to advance all forms of energy, including alternatives.