Reading - Green energy will never meet needs, says Exxon




Green energy will never meet needs, says Exxon

Terry Macalister Thursday July 7, 2005

The Guardian


ExxonMobil has dismissed solar and wind energy as "inconsequential" and urges politicians to concentrate on sources that would continue to provide 99% of future energy needs.

Lee Raymond, the chairman and chief executive, also argues that areas such as the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska should be opened to exploratory drilling.

His comments - in Exxon's house magazine, the Lamp - could be indicative of White House thinking. He says improvements in US air and water quality are being buried beneath "ideological agendas or inflamed rhetoric that often pervades discussions about energy and the environment".

Mr. Raymond has infuriated green groups and will worry G8 leaders encouraging George Bush to do more to fight global warming. Exxon is seen as a significant influence on presidential energy policies.

He said: "There are many alternative forms of energy that people talk about that may be interesting. But they are not consequential on the scale that will be needed and they may never have a significant impact on the energy balance".

"To the extent that people focus too much on that - for example on solar or wind, even though they are not economic - what they are doing is diverting attention from the real issues," he said.

He argues that even if alternative energy had double-digit growth rates they would only supply 1% of the world's energy needs in 25 years' time. "I am more interested in staying focused on the 99%," he said.

Mr. Raymond said he was not saying that US energy supply was at risk if exploration did not take place in Alaska. "I don't think we have a basis to say that. However, willful and deliberate ignorance about the country's energy base is also not a wise approach".

The US Geological Survey suggested there may be the equivalent of several billion barrels of oil below this area, part of which is an important breeding ground for caribou.

Critics said such a relatively small amount of hydrocarbons was reason enough for oil firms to be kept out.

Mr Raymond said: "That is a flawed argument because there are not many exploration projects anywhere in the world that we would pursue if they were predicated on such a standard."

Nick Rau, a campaigner at Friends of the Earth, said: "His refusal to accept the need for renewables is consistent with an inability to accept climate change is happening."



A) Answer the following questions.

(Haga doble click sobre las preguntas para ver las respuestas; un click vuelve a posición original)


B) Find words in the text which have the opposite meaning to those listed below.

Inicia sesión para hacer seguimiento de tus autoevaluaciones
1)Oppose (paragraph 1)
2)Deterioration (paragraph 3)
3)Inconsequential (paragraph 5)
4)Focusing (paragraph 6)
5)Safety (paragraph 8)
6)To allow (paragraph 9)
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C) Using the text as a guide. Fill in the following gaps with the correct preposition.

Inicia sesión para hacer seguimiento de tus autoevaluaciones
1)As we move onto the 21st Century we really need to concentrate how to help the enviroment. As each year more and more damage is being done to the azone layer. Goverments need to talk how to reduce the level of greenhouse gases as we are all risk.
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