The times, they are a-changing as BP looks to long term future with biofuels, energy storage, wind and solar power (and oil)

Emerging focus on renewable energies in BP strategy
Emerging focus on renewable energies in BP strategy

BP bosses are looking to a long-term future for the oil giant which includes developing biofuels, energy storage technologies and further investment in wind and solar power.

This was the clear message in a ‘steady as we go’ update on the oil and gas operations of the global energy behemoth in a message to shareholders at BP’s annual meeting yesterday.

Carl-Henric Svanberg, BP Chairman, said: “Each year we produce a view of the energy world over the next 20 years. And we regularly look at different scenarios. In this we can see the actions that could be needed in these different scenarios. We need these scenarios as we cannot predict the pace of change.

“Looking out over this timescale, consumption of oil will slow and eventually peak.

“Oil prices will continue to be under pressure. Efficiency and low cost production will be rewarded.

“Gas will replace coal for power generation. Motorists will benefit from advanced fuels and lubricants.

“Also over the next 20 years we will see the effect on oil consumption of increasingly efficient combustion engines. And obviously sales of electric vehicles will accelerate.

“Renewables will grow rapidly, more than the growth of fossil fuels combined.

“We will grow our renewables business. We have created a dedicated venturing business and and we will look at venturing and low carbon options across  a number of fronts from advanced mobility to power storage.

“As directors of BP, we have a clear purpose, to provide heat light and mobility to the communities which we serve and to do so through the transition to a lower carbon economy.

“Change is happening. And it is happening at an accelerating pace in the energy world.”

BP Group chief executive Bob Dudley added; “Our fundamental purpose has always been to help power economic growth and raise living standards, but we need to do that while helping to drive the transition to a lower carbon world. 

The Glen Lyon production vessel in BP Quad field, west of Shetland
The Glen Lyon production vessel in BP’s Quad field, west of Shetland

“But oil and gas will remain important for decades to come, but will see BP advancing low carbon activities right across the business.

“We already have a head start with a 20-year track record in renewables, having developed two great businesses in wind power and biofuels. We have about 6,000 employees in these businesses and are building on that experience on a number of fronts.

“In the last few months we bought a plant in the US that is going to help with the commercialisation of the next generation of biofuels. 

“Alongside this, our venturing arm is investing in technology companies with the potential to advance both low-carbon energy and industrial efficiency, from bio jet-fuel to solar and desalination technologies.”

“We’ve secured a long-term supply of biojet in a deal with Fulcrum BioEnergy, which is a sustainable aviation fuel.

“And our trading arm has secured a supply of bio-methane, which is renewable natural gas produced from waste.


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