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Exxon CEO Makes Fun Of Clean Energy; But What About Coming Price Parity?

Exxon CEO Makes Fun Of Clean Energy; But What About Coming Price Parity?

Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE: XOM) CEO Rex Tillerson mocked renewable energy in an April shareholder speech, according to a Politico report.

“We choose not to lose money on purpose,” Tillerson said in addressing the reason for the company not investing in renewables.

Tillerson suggested global warming models were inadequate and it would be challenging to meet proposed global emission-reduction targets. He added that technology might address rising sea levels or changing weather patterns, however, these “may or may not be induced by climate change," according to an AP report.

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Tillerson also pushed back on an initiative to install a climate change expert on the company’s board.

In a letter to shareholders, Tillerson and the board wrote, “To set aside one seat for an environmental specialist or for any single attribute or area of expertise would, in our view, not be in the best interests of the company or its shareholders because it would dilute the breadth needed by all directors to make informed decisions for the company.”

In spite of Tillerson’s position on renewables, the end of 2017 may see solar energy at grid parity in most of the world, according to Deutsche Bank analyst Vishal Shah.


“We believe the trend is clear: grid parity without subsidies is already here, increasing parity will occur, and solar penetration rates are set to ramp worldwide,” Shah wrote in an October 2014 note.

In considering Shah’s research, Bloomberg’s Tom Randal wrote, “Gone are the days when solar panels were an exotic plaything of Earth-loving rich people. Solar is becoming mainstream, and prices will continue to drop as the technology improves and financing becomes more affordable.”


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