Saudi Aramco CEO States Energy Transition is Failing, Unrealistic

A CNBC article published yesterday (March 19 2024) reports remarks made by CEO of Saudi Aramco (the world’s largest oil and gas company) at the CERAWeek energy conference in Houston, Texas which have made quite a stir. He stated that the energy transition (away from fossil fuels) is failing and that “We should abandon the fantasy of phasing out oil and gas and instead invest in them adequately reflecting realistic demand assumptions”.

His conclusion is based on what he considers the failure of wind and solar to supply under 4 per cent of the world’s energy, with less than 3 percent of vehicles being electric. He stated that the share of hydrocarbon usage in the energy mix this century has fallen only 3 percent, from 83 to 80 percent. He believes demand for energy will continue to grow from developing nations and that only hydrocarbons can realistically meet that demand at the moment.

Nasser believes cutting emissions is necessary, and did not propose giving up on alternative energy sources, He said: “We should phase in new energy sources and technologies when they are genuinely ready, economically competitive and with the right infrastructure.”

It’s bound to be a controversial stance, and one would not expect an oil and gas executive to denigrate his own industry, but there does seem to be growing acceptance of this kind of outlook from some quarters.