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    ExxonMobil Sets out Low-Carbon Growth Plan


The US major is catching up its rivals with its plans to decarbonise its business.

by: William Powell

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ExxonMobil Sets out Low-Carbon Growth Plan

US major ExxonMobil has set out its plans to commercialise lower emission technologies in support of the goals of the Paris Agreement with its 2021-25 spending spree. "We are fully committed to growing shareholder value by meeting the world’s energy demands today and pursuing a technology-driven strategy to succeed through the energy transition,” CEO Darren Woods told the company’s annual investor day March 3.

The company’s 2025 emission reduction plans include a 15%-20% cut in upstream greenhouse gas intensity versus 2016 , supported by a 40%-50% cut in methane intensity and 35%-45% cut in flaring intensity.

The plans are expected to reduce absolute greenhouse gas emissions by an estimated 30% for the Upstream business. Absolute flaring and methane emissions are expected to decrease by at least 40%.

Woods said the company's investment portfolio "is the best we’ve had in over 20 years," being able to adjust to market conditions. The future will include carbon capture and sequestration and low-carbon hydrogen to decarbonise the highest emitting sectors of the economy. These account for about four fifths of energy-related emissions: commercial transportation, power generation and heavy industry. ExxonMobil created a low-carbon unit a month ago although it is no stranger to CCS and has been working on partnerships developing that sector for at least a decade, according to a consultant speaking to NGW Magazine.

ExxonMobil plans capital spending (capex) of $16-$19bn in 2021 and $20-$25bn/yr through 2025 on high-return, cash-accretive projects. Last year it cut capex by over 30% as a result of the pandemic. The company also reduced cash operating expenses by 15% in 2020 and expects permanent structural savings of $6bn/yr by the end of 2023 versus 2019.

Resource additions in Guyana, Brazil and the US Permian Basin will generate a 10% return at $35/barrel. Downstream investments improve net cash margin by 30% and our Chemical investments grow high-value performance products by 60%, it said.