ExxonMobil offers insights into future of energy

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Ghianda Becerril
Staff Writer

Laura Mason, a research analyst at ExxonMobil, spoke last Wednesday, Feb. 1, to University of Dallas students in a presentation titled “An Outlook for Energy: A View to 2050,” and emphasized the growing global demand for energy. She also explained what it takes to pursue a career at a company such as ExxonMobil, the largest publicly traded international oil and gas company.

During the presentation, Mason – a Texas Christian University graduate – explained that the demand for global energy will rise significantly by 2040.

“Global energy demand will be about 30 percent higher in 2040 compared to 2010, as GDP more than doubles and the global population grows to nearly nine billion people,” Mason said.

Not only will oil remain the largest fuel source in 2040, but natural gas will also grow 60 percent by 2040, surpassing coal to become the second largest fuel source, according to Mason. Electricity demand will also go up.

“The demand for electricity will increase by 80 percent from 2010 to 2040, which is equal to the world adding four demand centers the size of the U.S. today,” Mason explained.

She said that natural gas, nuclear power and renewable energy would fuel much of this particular demanded increase, all while coal continues to get squeezed out of the mix due to environmental and efficiency concerns.

Mason explained that although the energy demand for transportation will continue to grow, energy demand for personal vehicles will remain flat between now and 2040, due to improved efficiency in the global vehicle fleet. The global vehicle fleet will reach 1.6 billion cars on the road in 2040.

“By 2040, 40 percent of vehicles will be hybrids,” Mason said. “This is because manufacturers are driven to improve the efficiency of their car fleets to achieve government mandates.”

Although the demand for more efficient vehicles will continue to increase, the demand for electric vehicles or Compressed Natural Gas vehicles will not penetrate the market in the same way, because their cost is significantly greater than a conventional gasoline vehicle, even after accounting for fuel savings, according to Mason.

As she concluded, Mason explained that the increasing share of oil and natural gas will come from unconventional sources, such as oil sands, right oil and shale gas.

“This emphasizes the importance of technology in helping the supply of oil and natural gas continue to grow,” concluded Mason.

After the presentation, Career Services allowed for a brief period for questions, where undergraduate and graduate students learned what it takes to work for a company such as ExxonMobil.

“The greatest advice I would give anyone looking for a career at ExxonMobil or in any field is to work hard on communication skills and always be an active learner,” said Mason. “It is someone who can know to ask the right questions and be actively thinking about how to approach a problem.”

Career Services Director Julie Janik also underscored academics.

“From the experience of Mason, it is very important for a student to have good grades as well as an active life on campus,” said Janik. “Leadership roles and internships are also important.”

Career Services also encourages UD students to attend presentations given by different companies in order to create networking and to see what kind of job opportunities are available to them.

“It is important for everyone to hear these events,” said Adrian Ramirez, Career Services Advisor. “We want to know what the student body is looking for. We want them to reach out. We do look forward to doing this again.”

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