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Rex Tillerson, ExxonMobil CEO
He also addressed fears associated with drilling techniques and oil dependency

ExxonMobil's CEO defended oil and gas drilling by saying that climate change is something humans can adapt to.

Rex Tillerson, ExxonMobil CEO, said issues like climate change, energy dependence and oil/gas drilling are blown out of proportion. He blames a lazy press, illiterate public and fear-mongering advocacy groups for the bad light placed on the oil industry.

Climate change is a controversial topic that has been subjected to much debate. Tillerson said that fossil fuels may cause global warming, but argued that humans can easily adapt to the warmer climate. More specifically, he said that humans can adapt to rising sea levels and climate changes because he doubts the validity of climate modeling, which predicts the magnitude of impact associated with climate change.

"We have spent our entire existence adapting," said Tillerson. "We'll adapt. It's an engineering problem and there will be an engineering solution."

Others, however, disagree with Tillerson's assessment. Andrew Weaver, chairman of climate modeling and analysis at Canada's University of Victoria, said that adapting to climate change would be much harder than just preventing it in the first place.

In addition, adapting to climate change could be much more expensive than preventing it. According to Steve Coll, author of "Private Empire: ExxonMobil and American Power," adapting to climate change would require moving entire cities. A better alternative would be legislation that slows the process of global warming.

An example of such a measure is the proposed fuel standards for 2017-2025, which will require automakers to create vehicles capable of 54.5 MPG by 2025. The effort aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and lessen the country's dependency on foreign oil. These standards will cost the auto industry $157.3 billion and add an extra $2,000 to the sticker price of new autos, but it will save consumers $1.7 trillion at the gas pump.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) will finalize the fuel efficiency standards by the end of July 2012. Such measures could hit ExxonMobil's wallet with less gas used.

Tillerson also addressed the topic of consequences related to oil/gas drilling techniques, saying that drilling will always present possible risks like spills and accidents. But he mentioned that such risks are manageable and worth the end result, which is the energy provided.

Tillerson also said that drilling in shale formations doesn't pose life-threatening risks to those living nearby. However, drilling mixes millions of gallons of water with sand and chemicals that creates drilling wastewater. If this water is not treated, it can contaminate drinking water through cracked drilling pipes.

Tillerson also mentioned his problem with views on oil dependency. He said that there will always be access to oil, and that it doesn't matter where the U.S. gets oil because it is priced globally. Tillerson added that the U.S. only receiving oil from North America would still increase gas prices in the U.S. because it would cause a "disruption" in the Middle East.

Source: The Hook

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What are the real answers?
By JediJeb on 6/29/2012 7:14:48 PM , Rating: 2
In addition, adapting to climate change could be much more expensive than preventing it. According to Steve Coll, author of "Private Empire: ExxonMobil and American Power," adapting to climate change would require moving entire cities. A better alternative would be legislation that slows the process of global warming.

This seems to be assuming that global temperatures are exactly in the range they should be now, or perhaps 1 degree warmer, and would always remain at these levels if there were no humans on the planet. The problem with that is even the global warming advocates among climatologists will admit that in past geologic history we know that there have been times when temperatures were much warmer and much cooler. If that is true then even if legislation could possibly stop warming global temperatures now, some time in the future we are still going to have to deal with both warmer and cooler temperatures, which means that sooner or later we WILL have to adapt or die. If it means moving entire cities then that is what we will have to do. I guess people like this are more worried about shoving the engineering problems farther down the road, just as they claim people like the Exxon CEO want to shove the problems of anti-warming legislation down the road.

Whether it is shifting into another ice age or into much warmer temperatures, we will still have to adapt to survive, and honestly adapting to the warmer temperatures will probably be easier than adapting to colder ones. Even though there is evidence of much warmer temperatures globally in the past, there is no evidence there was ever a "desert earth", but there is evidence of a "snowball earth" when temperatures have fallen drastically. Where is the evidence in the geologic record that higher CO2 levels and higher temperatures will sterilize the planet as some are preaching?

What is happening is the Earth is shifting just outside of what modern man thinks is the ideal conditions for his own prosperity and he has no way to control it. People in power, and people in general, do not like to be in a position where they have no control over the things around them. They will do whatever they can to maintain control, and if they can't maintain control then they will do whatever they can to maintain the illusion of control, to make them feel safe and that they are powerful instead of helpless. Is the Earth warming? Yes, to some extent, though it hasn't yet warmed as much as many models from the past have predicted so far. Is mankind causing the warming? That is still debatable, though some have a religious fervor to proclaim the extreme to both sides of the argument. This is quite obvious when you look at both sides of the argument in this article. We need to look at ways to use less energy, not only to "save the planet"(which really means save our happy place in time) but to help prevent real pollution and make what we do be more efficient. We also need to look at the solutions needed as global climate swings warmer and cooler, because it is better to start planning now for both extremes in a proactive way, than simply try to react once it happens. The last thing we need to also do is stop preaching the FUD on both sides of the debate and grow up and work together, though that will be even more difficult a task than either of the first two.

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