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Oil and natural gas take us down the street and around the world. They warm and cool our homes and businesses. They provide the ingredients for medicines, fertilizers, fabrics, plastics and other products that make life safer, easier and better.
While we rely on them for most of our energy and will likely do so for years to come, emissions from their production and use may be helping to warm our planet by enhancing the natural greenhouse effect of the atmosphere. That’s why oil and gas companies are also working to reduce their greenhouse emissions.
To start, they're closely managing their own energy use. One strategy involves heat and power technology that turns waste heat into energy, reducing energy consumption and emissions. The most recent data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration show that CO2 greenhouse emissions from U.S. industry, including oil and natural gas companies, have declined and were actually below 1990 levels.
Companies are also expanding use of alternative energy with lower greenhouse emissions. They are researching, developing and/or marketing virtually every form of renewable or alternative energy, including solar power, biofuels, geothermal energy, and wind power. They are working with the automakers and government agencies on new fuel/vehicle technology such as fuel cells and hydrogen power. While companies must continue to meet the demands of today’s and tomorrow’s consumers for oil and gas, they are also preparing for a future in which alternatives will play a much more significant role.
On other fronts, companies are reducing natural gas flaring to cut emissions (while also adding to energy supplies) and storing CO2 underground, where it can be safely held for thousands of years. The oil and gas industry has also been implementing new emissions estimation and tracking tools to enable it to assess how well it is meeting the goals it has set for itself and report progress to the public.
To see more about what companies are doing, please view Companies Address Climate Change. Also visit our Membership page for links to member company websites and more information about company initiatives..