Chevron CEO to Obama: Focus on Energy

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Chevron CEO to Obama: Focus on Energy

HOUSTON -- President-elect Barack Obama needs to focus on raising the consciousness of Americans about the importance of energy efficiency and working on increasing domestic energy sources, Chevron Corp.'s CEO Dave O’Reilly told the Houston Chronicle.

"We need to work on oil and gas and nuclear and coal and renewables—all of it. We ought to be working on growing as much domestic supply as we can," he said.

Although energy prices are lower at the moment, long-term trends indicate demand for energy is growing globally, he said. "At some point, inevitably, demand growth will occur again."

O'Reilly added oil prices reached an all-time high of just over $147 per barrel in July, because demand grew. "That price sent a signal to the market that demand needed to slow down, and it did," he told the newspaper. "It slowed down pretty dramatically. As a result, you're getting supply and demand back in balance."

Speaking about how Chevron, the second-largest U.S. oil company by market value, is weathering the ongoing financial crisis, O'Reilly said the company is in an "extremely good position" to continue to invest on key opportunities. The multibillion investment commitments the company has to develop projects around the world were made years ago, when the price of oil was much lower, and for that reason the company is confident in its ability to finance and execute them, he said.

However, O'Reilly didn't discount the possibility that companies that provide services to Chevron could suffer the effects of the financial crisis and affect Chevron's projects. "Obviously we can't speak for everybody else, but yes, there could be some issues with service providers," he told the newspaper.