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From BABC Member PetroPlan:

Despite the drive for reduction in CO2, and to meet climate change, which will be undoubtedly a challenge for oil companies to manage going forward, I can't see at present any viable alternative to meet global energy needs other than oil and gas. The long term trends, at least for the next 50 years, I think will still involve increasing production, until there is a similar step change in renewables technology to reduce its costs and increase efficiency. This may have to involve large scale carbon sequestration, that ball is still in the court of the governments, but if that is an option taken then oil companies are likely to be the ones tasked to deliver that CO2 sequestration anyway, as they are the ones with the technology and ability to move fluids in vast volume. Any changes will likely be gradual, and oil and gas as a resource for chemicals and such will always remain.

We have been "too" successful, if anything, in meeting this global energy challenge, and in the short term the market has been oversupplied. But this will correct naturally and going forward I think there is still a very rewarding, exciting career available in oil and gas, and one that the world needs, to maintain its energy output, without which the crisis we would face would dwarf any issues of climate change in my opinion.

Professor Jonathan Redfern, Head of Petroleum Geoscience and Basin Studies research and Chair of Petroleum Geoscience at University of Manchester

We echo Professor Redfern’s statement that the oil and gas sector is one which still offers incredible opportunity, from travelling the world to the chance to help discover new techniques and help keep the world’s energy lines open. It’s a demanding but rewarding career, and we thoroughly recommend it.

We also agree with his comments on the future of oil and gas. There has not been, to date, a viable alternative to oil and gas, and it’s difficult to imagine our global dependence on it waning. Moving forward, the key challenges for companies will be to reduce costs, adhere to environmental standards, and continue to discover new methods, all while achieving high levels of efficiency. A steep challenge, but the talent in this sector is second to none.”