June 13, 2023
President and CEO, Occidental
President, Global Energy Institute, U.S. Chamber of Commerce
As fuel and commodity prices continue to soar, the U.S. and India are placing utmost importance on developing a roadmap for a global energy transition.
At the 48th annual India Ideas Summit, Vicki Hollub, president and CEO of Occidental Petroleum (Oxy), discussed the importance of energy transition and technological innovations amid climate concerns and rising prices — and how the partnership between the U.S. and India can help drive critical change in these areas.
Partnering with India Is Crucial for Energy Innovation
Hollub explained both the private and public sectors need to be a part of the discussion surrounding sustainable energy, reducing emissions, and the opportunities that exist to work together nationally and internationally to transition to renewable energy.
In particular, India has “tremendous opportunities and has accomplished a lot over the years,” Hollub said, noting that Prime Minister Modi and Indian employees have been “incredibly smart and very strategic” in their vision for the energy market in India.
“The companies [in India] want to do things right, and they are paying back to the community as they do it. I was really impressed with that, and that’s the kind of character and culture we like to work with and want to be a part of,” she said.
Moderator Marty Durbin, SVP of Policy and President of the Global Energy Institute at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, agreed, citing a previous conversation he had: “The energy transition is not going to be successful if India is not a strong partner.”
CO2 Enhancement and New Technologies Can Help Meet Emissions Goals
According to Hollub, the energy sector is seeing new technologies that harness CO2 for enhanced oil recovery — a process that could shape the future of renewable energy and energy transition. The technology surrounding CO2 has been in use for 50 years, and, when paired with recent technological innovations, offers vast potential for helping the world meet its emissions goals.
“[When you] inject CO2 into an oil reservoir, it then energizes the oil and helps produce more out of a reservoir than would otherwise be produced,” Hollub explained.
This strategy uses direct air capture technology to remove CO2 from the air, thus lessening emissions.
“[This is] the way company, the industry, and the world need to go to ultimately produce oil that actually can be net-zero or net-negative,” she explained. “It's all about adding and not taking away resources that otherwise could be very helpful to the country and its people.”
Global Coordination Is Needed to ‘Make the Energy Transition Work’
Hollub emphasized that representatives from different industrial and global sectors are working together to develop a realistic plan that does not make the energy transition too quickly, as some countries have done “without understanding the risk of that transition” and potential negative effects on quality of life.
“We should be ambitious as we can … but we’re not going to get there if we don’t have the technology, the policy, and the market signals, so that the private sector will make those investments,” she explained.
She also expressed excitement at the partnerships developing between different leading nations, including the U.S. and India.
“These are exciting times for the U.S. and for India, because the relationship needs to work for the world to accomplish the things that need to be accomplished,” said Hollub. “There’s certainly a desire from companies, both in India and the United States, to partner to do things that will help both countries achieve the goals that are so important for the rest of the world.”
From the Series