Gas Prices Up, Globe Still Warming and ExxonMobil Earnings Soar

Thu, 2008-01-24 11:56Kevin Grandia
Kevin Grandia's picture

Gas Prices Up, Globe Still Warming and ExxonMobil Earnings Soar

ExxonMobil, the largest publicly traded oil company in the world, is set to announce their largest annual earnings ever. Which also means ExxonMobil will break their own record set last year as the most money ever made by a company in US history.

CNN Money is reporting that ExxonMobil will announce next week $10.37 billion in earnings for the fourth quarter - a paltry $111 million a day.

Expected annual earnings for ExxonMobil in 2007 are a whopping $39 billion - or about $106 million a day, $4.4 million an hour and $73,000 a second.

On another entirely unrelated note, ExxonMobil and their heavily sponsored third-party associations have decried solutions to global warming as just too darn expensive. In fact, until very recently, ExxonMobil did not even acknowledge that global warming was anything to worry about.

Many more have claimed that attempts to put a cap on greenhouse gas emissions would cripple industry, cause huge upswings in the price of oil, and inevitably the price of gas for the everyday consumer.

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Comments

An interesting connection that people aren't talking about much, if at all, is how the "higher oil price -> economy killing" consequence hasn't unfolded and what that would have meant if we had actually done something since Kyoto's inception. That is, back in the early days of Kyoto (say, 1997-2002) the idea that Kyoto might raise oil prices and therefore hurt the economy might have made more sense to the average person on the street. But since then we've seen oil prices go up on their own about 10 times since 1998 [1]. This is 1000's of times more than had we actually done anything under Kyoto. Instead of saying, "well jeez maybe Kyoto might not have hurt much after all", all we've heard about from pundits and commentators is the resiliency of the economy in light of higher oil prices. The few cents per barrel increase predicted under Liberal government emission reduction plans [2] were to go into government-funded emission reduction efforts for the environmental and economic benefit of Canadians. Instead they go to predominantly foreign-based multinationals.

The only other thing I would mention here is that the figures quoted above are profits. Exxon's revenue is much higher, roughly 9 or 10 times the figures quoted. That means it's annual spending power is probably in the US$360 to US$400 billion range. For reference, the Canadian federal government's revenue in 2006-07 was C$236 billion [3]. The Canadian dollar averaged about 88 cents US over that time period.

[1] http://www.inflationdata.com/inflation/images/charts/Oil/Inflation_Adj_Oil_Prices_Chart.htm
[2] http://www.climateark.org/shared/reader/welcome.aspx?linkid=16754
[3] http://www.fin.gc.ca/taxdollar07/text/html/taxdollar07_e.html

Exxon should set things up where they lose money instead of selling their goods at a profit.

Thanks, Kevin. That was possibly the most ringing endorsement I've seen for holding Exxon shares in one's investment portfolio!

Do you work for Exxon Rob? Any other fossil-fuel related company or organization? You should be up-front about it if you do as it's hurting you to not do so. How? Let me explain...

Have you noticed the asymmetry here:

They (Desmoggers): put their full names and associations out there while attempting to make the world better and cut through lies and denial.

You: put only a first name, which might not be your real name, and no info about your associations while you insult, obfuscate generally be non-constructive and even non-cogent.

Given the asymmetry, you become the obvious one to discredit or disregard to the vast majority of readers of this blog. You delegitimise yourself in this way.

Now either you don't care because you're a sad individual who gets some kind of perverse kick out of your entries or you've not thought through your strategy very well. Either way, you're not really helping yourself or anyone.

Now did you have anything to say which is actually relevant to the topic, or my comment?

(BTW, speaking of being paid, of course the shills who write the articles on this website reveal their full names -- because that's what the PR Firm (Hoggan and Associates) which employs them pays them to do. Hope that clears things up for you.)

But just ignore him, it's not worth the effort.

Tom,
Why was Mike making a "good call"? All he seemed to be doing was expressing his displeasure with the fact that Rob dared to comment, without actually contradicting his his actual comment. All he did was make an ad hominem attack on Rob, and a ridiculous one at that.

All I can conclude is Mike doesn't really have any rational argument to counter Rob's observation. Is that what you mean by "good call"?

Rob failed to answer Mike's questions, which were indeed "actually relevant to the topic" and relevant to Rob's "comment".
Secondly Mike made a number of very accurate observations about Rob's typical activities around here:"...you insult, obfuscate, generally be non-constructive and even non-cogent."
Lastly, I pretty much agree with Mike's final opinion of Rob being "a sad individual". Except he's polite.
I do find it curious that during the same time span that Rob is thrashing around on different threads on Desmog, you show up defending a troll.

Tom,
maybe I'm missing something, but you never explained how Mike's or now even your own comments are relevant to the topic? In what way is it relevant?

If you read the article and Rob's comment, they both relate to Exxon's profitability. Rob is even agreeing with the thrust of the article. From what little I know of business, the facts back him up.

Let's pretend for a minute that mike's unsubstantiated accusation, that Rob is somehow being paid by Exxon, is corect. How does that make Rob's observation untrue? It's certainly easy enough to independently verify whether rob's endorsement has any basis in fact. Certainly a lot easier than to verify whether he is a secret agent for Exxon, or whatever wierd thing Mike is driving at?

And why so much blind anger and vituperation toward rob? If nothing else, at least he's stayed on topic, which is more than either you or mike seem willing to do. So who's really the troll here?

If you don't like what rob has to say, then give some reasons, instead of making childish insults and ad hominem attacks. Otherwise, rob ends up making you both look like fools. but maybe that was his goal? I don't know. If so, you've played right into his hands.

Rob is a troll and this is his sock puppet. Ignore them.

I agree

Since I stopped bothering with the trolls, I find it's possible to actually carry on a conversation here. Now and then there's a bit of a breeze when they flap desperately trying to get someone to pay attention, but eventually they just fade into the background.

Fern Mackenzie

Since I stopped bothering with the trolls

Oh, you mean like right now? It's good that you always make these loud announcements whenever you are "stop bothering with the trolls" -- otherwise we'd never know the difference.

This is similar to your clever strategy to reduce the world's population -- by breeding more offspring.

And just a word to Thomas -- I didn't intentionally set out to make anyone look foolish with my comment. They did that all by themselves.

- "trolls"
- "sock puppets"
- "secret agents for Exxon"

Ah, yes. A nice insight into the paranoid mental workings of the Global Warming cultists.

Now, does anyone have anything to say which is actually relevant to the topic?

Tom, VJ & Mike, Exxon/Mobil's profits are certainly a compelling reason for them to keep trying to convince people that burning fossil fuels isn't causing global warming. If I were Tim Ball et al, I'd be asking for a raise!

Unfortunately, it's also indicative that in spite of the astronomical price, people continue to burn the stuff like there's no tomorrow. And then there are places like Iran and Venezuela -- check out this article: http://www.theage.com.au/news/world/venezuela-tanking-on-2-cent-fuel-binge/[space inserted]2008/01/18/1200620209058.html

Fern Mackenzie

"Exxon/Mobil's profits are certainly a compelling reason for them to keep trying to convince people that burning fossil fuels isn't causing global warming."

Who needs Exxon to convince anybody? In the area we were working today it was -50 degrees C. Or maybe that was just an elaborate publicity stunt orchestrated by Exxon?

Besides, regardless of what people believe, unless they can put apple juice in their gas tanks or make plastics out of mud, Exxon will remain profitable. It's not like they have to convince people to use oil -- or is that seriously what you believe?

"Unfortunately, it's also indicative that in spite of the astronomical price, people continue to burn the stuff like there's no tomorrow."

Indicative of what, exactly, you never bother to say. Or maybe people continue to prefer to use oil because it's actually not "astronically" priced as you -- based on nothing -- would like to imagine. Adjusted for inflation, it's nowhere near as expensive as it was in 1980/81, and it's actually about the same price as it was in 2000, compared to the price of gold.

"And then there are places like Iran and Venezuela"

I wouldn't worry too much about Chavez (unless one happens to live in Venezuela, of course). His career is following the typical route of socialist kleptocrat despots. Sure, he's practically giving away gasoline. Why not? It didn't cost him anything to steal it when he confiscated the privately owned petroleum industries in Venezuela. They're already making all the mandatory police state moves: arrests of political enemies, food shortages, etc. Expect the appearance of mass graves, shortly. In twelve months Venezuela will be Zimbabwe.

Exxon/Mobile hasn't managed to convince Planet Earth that carbon emissions are not causing global warming.
What was the name of that Roman Emperor with the fiddle?
Nero I believe?

I wouldn't mind the huge profits so much if they were ploughing it all back into R&D on alternative & renewable energy (I can dream, can't I?). But even if they haven't been convinced about AGW, people ARE talking about peak oil, and for them the concept of running out is at least as catastrophic as the consequences of rising temperatures. I'd have thought Exxon et al would be planning to be ready, there at the "End of Oil" with "The Answer": wind farms, solar power, biofuels -- the whole range, at a price that would satisfy their addiction to profit.

Fern Mackenzie

You sound like a radical econ professor who attended your wonderful classes a few years ago! Saw where you got a big award, it was deserved when I was your student! Want to feel old -- I am now a retired college professor, STRS and the works. Still teach about 6 courses per semester on the internet, econ and my beloved history both. I am very proud of my 4.6 rating on Rate Your Professor but even more joyful that you are still the perfect 5.0! (Students do like history better than econ! I get reviews like you were a great teacher for an econ guy!) You are always in my heart and mind! You made all your students do what our nation considers dangerous -- think! Wordsworth's "Ode to Imitations on Immortality" includes those beautiful words about splendor in the grass and glory of the flower, but in the last stanza he admits that "some losses are beyond tears." The day you really leave the classroom will be a loss beyond tears. (I have a broken arm, so please forgive my failure to do a spell and grammar check.)

[x]

ExxonMobil, the nation's largest oil and gas company, will begin disclosing risks associated with shale drilling and fracking to investors, in response to a long-running campaign by a coalition of shareholders.

In February, the groups of investors in a handful of major oil and gas companies including Exxon, Chevron and EOG Resources, demanded for the fifth year in a row more information from companies about the risks associated with fracking. The motion...

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