Another op-ed from ExxonMobil
The graphic on this op-ed is a pie chart of ExxonMobil investments from 2001-2005. The largest share of the pie is, of course, North America at 25%. Next is Africa at 15%, with Europe coming in a close third at 14%.
I'll leave the commentary today to ABC news who ran an article highlighting this "coincidence":
"On the same day it announced earnings of more than $8 billion for the first quarter of 2006, ExxonMobil placed advertisements in several newspapers claiming that its massive profits would not just benefit the company but would also be good for millions of Americans.
It was a preemptive strike against a public backlash from consumers who have grown frustrated paying high gasoline prices while big oil companies prosper. Exxon said its second consecutive fiscal quarter of massive earnings would not only benefit more than 2.5 million American shareholders but would also help the company expand refining capacity, explore the globe for new supplies and research new environmentally-sound technologies.
Sounds pretty good. But is it true?
Last year only 30 percent of ExxonMobil's $36 billion in profits went to investment and exploration, according to the company's own financial statement. Fifteen percent went directly to shareholders in the form of cash dividends, and the biggest chunk — 40 percent — was used to repurchase its own stock. Less than 2 percent of the company's profits were spent on research and development." (Read the whole article here.)
And if you don't want to click on the ExxonMobil PDF file to see the ad, I've included the text below:
When ExxonMobil is financially successful, it's good news for the more than 2.5 million Americans who directly own shares in our company, and the millions more who do through their pension, insurance and mutual funds.
Earnings are also important for meeting the world's future energy needs. Because they enable us to continue making vital investments that benefit everyone in the long run. In fact, over the last fifteen yeras our investments have exceeded our earnings.
In the last five years alone, we have invested $74 billion on six continents to search for new supplies, build new production facilities, expand refining capacity and deploy new, environmentally-sound technologies.
More than a third of this investment has been in North America - the remainder expands supplies for world markets, including the United States. Major developments are advancing with the promise of new energy supplies for Americans for many years to come.
Today, for example, we are unlocking the natural gas potential of Colorado's Piceance Basin; investing in new exploration and production projects in the Gulf of Mexico; progressing plans for two new natural gas pipelines from Alaska and Canada to the continental United States, with a combined capacity equivalent to 10% of today's U.S. consumption; investing in the world's largest liquified natural gas project, designed specifically to supply American consumers;and continuing to invest in our U.S. refinieries, where capacity growth over the last decade has outpaced growth demand and equates to building a new refinery every three years.
Our earnings go up and down with the business cycle. But our commitment to plan (and invest) for the future does not.
Oh - and one last thing, if you haven't already check out Sustainablog's posting about a press release from Oil Drum which analyzes the rhetoric coming out the of the White House about oil.