Something extraordinary has occurred perfectly timed to mark the 50th anniversary of Earth Day and the 10th anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon BP disaster: the oil industry is imploding.
An unprecedented drop in oil demand due to the COVID-19 economic shutdown, a global surplus of oil due to Saudi/Russian oversupply, and scarce oil storage availability have caused crude oil prices to plummet below zero for the first time.
The oil and gas industry was already facing structural problems before the coronavirus: highly leveraged (indebted), low prices due to oversupply and mild winters (thanks to climate change) and my favorite: actual competition from renewable energy and electric vehicles.
Ironically, one of the blessings of COVID-19 has been the remarkable resilience of the Earth resulting from stay-at-home orders and the break from our busy lives. We have clearer skies, and the views are longer and brighter. So being less busy, less “productive” (as in the production of stuff) and not jet-setting around has the planet breathing a sigh of relief.
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