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Oil companies expand offshore drilling, pointing to energy needs

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By illuminem briefings

· 2 min read

illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on New York Times or enjoy below:

🗞️ Driving the news: Oil companies, led by giants like Shell, are expanding offshore drilling in the Gulf of Mexico, highlighting this approach as a lower-emission alternative to land-based oil extraction
• They argue that the energy needs of the world, even in 2050, will necessitate continued oil and gas production

🔭 The context: Offshore drilling operations reportedly emit up to a third less greenhouse gas compared to terrestrial operations
• This shift comes amidst a broader industry trend of increasing oil production, which has faced criticism from environmental groups urging a faster transition to clean energy sources

🌍 Why it matters for the planet: Despite the touted emissions reductions of offshore drilling, the process still contributes significantly to greenhouse gas emissions
• This strategy also risks further environmental disasters similar to the Deepwater Horizon spill, which had devastating effects on marine ecosystems and local economies

⏭️ What's next: The industry's focus on deepwater drilling is likely to continue growing, supported by advances in technology that make these operations safer and more efficient
• However, this approach faces increasing scrutiny from environmentalists and policy makers pushing for a swifter pivot to renewable energy

💬 One quote: "The world will continue to need oil, by the way, even in 2050. It will have to be lower and lower emissions," said Wael Sawan, chief executive of Shell

📈 One stat: The greenhouse gas emissions associated with extracting a barrel of oil from the Gulf of Mexico are up to a third lower than those from U.S. land fields

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