The Business of Job Creation

Publish date: 
September 8, 2011

Chevron Chairman and CEO John Watson has advice for Washington on jobs – even as the president prepares to deliver a much-anticipated address to Congress on job creation Thursday night: Leave it to us.

Talking at an energy jobs summit at the Capitol Visitors Center, a little more than 24 hours before the president is scheduled to speak to lawmakers, Watson said government shouldn’t be in the business of trying to create jobs. That’s better left to private business and industry – especially his: oil and natural gas.

Numbers from a new study back him up. Research and consulting firm Wood Mackenzie said a set of pro-development energy policies that would increase the access of oil and gas resources throughout North America, including oil shale could:

  • Create 1 million jobs by 2018, in addition to those that would be generated under existing policy, and 1.4 million by 2030.
  • Generate nearly $800 billion in cumulative revenues to government by 2030.

Watson said one of industry’s biggest challenges is the current pace of federal permitting. Wood Mackenzie’s analysis says opening federal onshore and offshore areas that are currently closed to energy development would boost job and revenue creation while increasing daily oil and natural gas production by 10.3 million barrels of oil equivalent by 2030.

That’s right. In addition to job and revenue growth, there’d be the energy. With new U.S. access, full development of Canada’s oil sands resources and the growing domestic biofuels industry, the United State would be able to meet 100 percent of its liquid fuel demand by 2026. More from Watson:

  • Developing U.S. resources would send a powerful message to global energy markets.
  • The states are "fully capable" of regulating shale oil and natural gas development.  The states already have regulatory regimes that are tailored to local conditions (such as geology, hydrology and topography) and have demonstrated the ability to both monitor and work with industry.
  • Tomorrow’s energy is oil and natural gas, but the country needs all energy sources for a secure future.