Chevron Corporation (Chevron), one of the largest leading integrated energy companies in the world, is engaged in every aspect of the energy industry. Chevron produces, explores, and transports crude oil and natural gas as well as refines, markets, and distributes transportation fuels and lubricants. Chevron also manufactures and sells petrochemical products, generates power and produces geothermal energy, provides renewable energy and energy efficiency solutions, and develops the energy resources of the future, including research into advanced biofuels. An 1879 oil discovery at Pico Canyon, north of Los Angeles, traces the beginnings of Chevron.
That discovery led to the formation of the Pacific Coast Oil Co, which later became Standard Oil Co. of California and, subsequently, Chevron. The company acquired Gulf Oil Corporation in 1984, and took on the name Chevron, which nearly doubled their worldwide proved crude oil and natural gas reserves. Their fusion with Gulf was then the largest in U.S. history. Another major branch of the family tree is The Texas Fuel Company, formed in Beaumont, Texas, in 1901. It later became known as The Texas Company and eventually, Texaco. In 2001, their two companies merged. Also in 2005, Chevron purchased an additional company named Unocal.
The acquisition of Unocal Corporation in 2005 strengthened Chevron’s position as an energy industry leader, increasing their crude oil and natural gas assets around the world. In 2012, Chevron’s average net production was 2.61 million barrels of oil-equivalent per day. About seventy-five percent of that production occurred outside the United States. Chevron had a global refining capacity of 1.95 million barrels of oil per day at the end of 2012. Its marketing network supports retail outlets on six continents, and it has invested in 11 power-generating facilities in the United States and Asia (“Company Profile”).
Chevron is committed to the practice of ethical behavior and contributes to economic development while improving the quality of life of the workforce and their families as well as the local community and society at large, wherever they are present. For example, Chevron is committed to helping the Angolan people improve their health, education, and livelihoods, and with its partners, they have invested more than $210 million in programs that support the health, education, economic, environmental, and social needs of millions of Angolans since 1989.
They take an integrated approach to community development. All factors are considered, from improving access to basic human needs and education to supporting sustainable income sources, such as agriculture, fisheries, and small businesses. Chevron is very committed to multiple awareness campaigns to reduce the main causes of illness and death, especially among women and children. Programs include health awareness campaigns focused on the prevention or treatment of diseases such as malaria, HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, poliomyelitis, breast cancer, and sickle cell disease.
The Cabinda Blood Bank, in Angola, in its efforts to guarantee safe blood transfusion services in the province of Cabinda has been supported by Chevron for almost twenty years. Chevron helps supply all the consumable medical supplies, equipment, and support training for health workers. So far, more than 230,000 safe transfusions have been provided. In 2012, through UNICEF, Chevron and its partners from Block 0 and Block 14 donated $1.17 million to the Ministry of Health to fund an initiative against the wild poliovirus. Around 500,000 children under the age of five in many provinces of Angola such as Cabinda, Lunda Norte, Lunda Sul, Zaire, Uíge and Malange received benefit from the donation.
Chevron signed an accord to help establish the nation’s first comprehensive sickle cell disease program. The $4 million project is aimed at early diagnosis and treatment of newborn babies. The first of its kind in Angola, the project was expanded to Cabinda, Angola, in 2012. Since the beginning of the program in 2011, more than 27,000 babies have been screened. In 2011, Chevron also donated $6 million to a five-year program that sends doctors to the most medically underserved populations in Africa, including Angola.
In 2012, in both Luanda and Cabinda provinces of Angola, the program stationed five doctors from the United States. Chevron also provides support in the educational system. In 2012, Chevron and its partners invested more than $18 million to support educational initiatives:
The competitive quiz Aprenda Brincando (Learn Through Playing) promotes learning outside the classroom. In 2012, the interactive program reached more than 1,500 students in Cabinda province. More than 2,000 children from ten public primary schools in Cabinda, Huambo, and Luanda provinces participated in a writing contest. Chevron contributed $1 million to a project conducted by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization and the Angola Ministry of Education that helps introduce entrepreneurship curricula in secondary schools. So far, more than 10,000 students and forty-five schools in eight of Angola’s eighteen provinces have received training.
In 2012, Chevron and Its partners provided funds for the construction of three new primary schools in Cabinda. Combined, the schools have fifty classrooms and a capacity for 4,000 students. Chevron works with its partners to promote more sustainable agricultural production and facilitate lasting business relationships among producers, suppliers, banks, processors, and distributors of cash crops. Its programs provide technical assistance to thousands of organized farmers, helping to increase yields (“In the Community”).
Over the last three years, more than 3,000 fishermen and fish traders from Cabinda Province have received training, tools, and equipment through its program launched in 2009 to help small-scale fishermen increase their catch. Another initiative helps fishermen reduce operating costs through access to credit, equipment, and supplies. Through business development programs, Chevron helps promote micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises in Angola with programs that promote competitiveness by offering training and mentoring (“In the Community”).
Chevron also develops programs that empower communities. “Increasing the capabilities of individuals and organizations is a key feature of the social investment programs Chevron supports (“In the Community”). In 2012, Chevron donated $300,000 for 1,500 wheelchairs and 200 tricycles to the Lwini Foundation, which distributed them to those in need in throughout Angola.
Traffic accidents are the second-biggest cause of deaths in Angola. In 2012, Chevron partnered with Angola’s National Directorate of Road and Traffic to sponsor a national road safety campaign. The effort led to a massive awareness campaign on pedestrian safety and accident prevention. Chevron donated $1 million for more than 2,100 bicycles and safety equipment for young people from rural areas in Huambo and Cabinda provinces (“In the Community”).
In 2012, the Portuguese-language business magazine Exame named Chevron the Best Company in Angola for Excellence in Sustainability and Corporate Responsibility Programs. In 2010, the Angolan Ministry of Environment presented Chevron’s Cabinda Gulf Oil Co. with the Palanca Award for its contribution to the environment in Angola. Each year, the Palanca Award recognizes the efforts of those who strive to preserve the environment and use sustainable development principles. In 2009, Offshore magazine selected Tombua-Landana as one of the five most notable projects in the world.
That year, the $3.8 billion project began production. The deep-water project includes forty-six wells and has the fourth-highest compliant, or flexible, tower in the world. Considered a reference publication for the energy and gas industry, Offshore awarded the same distinction, in 2005, to another Chevron project in Angola, the Benguela Belize-Lobito Tomboco project (“Record of Achievement”). While Chevron has demonstrated positive aspect of its activities in the community in which it operates through genuine programs and initiatives, it has also caused harmful consequences to our environment.
The oil industry over the last ten years has caused significant damage to the quality of life on earth and the balance of our ecosystem. With rising awareness of the damage to the environment caused by industry, especially regarding global warming, regulatory standards have been continuously tightened in recent years. One of the most important developments in this area has been the introduction of the Kyoto Protocol for the reduction of greenhouse gases.
The protocol calls on industrialized countries to reduce their greenhouse gas emission level by 5.2% on an average annual basis during the 2008-2012 period, compared with 1990 emissions levels (“DATAMONITOR”). Further, in 2005, the US environmental protection agency (EPA) issued a ‘clean air interstate rule’ (CAIR), to reduce the emission levels.
According to the rule, the states have to reduce the allowable sulfur dioxide (SO2) emissions by 70% and reduce Nitrous Oxide (NOX) by 60% by 2015 compared with the 2003 levels. The company is governed by these regulations which could impose new liabilities.
This could result in a material decline in Chevron’s profitability in the short term (“DATAMONITOR”). Chevron was fined $30,000 in July 2008 for releasing too much air pollution in the Hatter’s Pond natural gas field near Creola, Alabama. The Alabama Department of Environmental Management made an allegation that three compressor units in the gas field released higher amounts of volatile organic compounds than allowed under pollution permits.
The fine was the 10th largest issued by the agency in 2008. Any such incident could negatively affect the image of the company (“DATAMONITOR”). Air pollution is responsible for major health effects. Every year, the health of countless people is ruined or endangered by air pollution. Older people are highly vulnerable to diseases induced by air pollution. Those with heart or lung disorders are under additional risk.
Children and infants are also at serious risk. Air pollutants such as ozone, nitrogen oxides, and sulfur dioxide also have harmful effects on our ecosystem; they can destroy our vegetation and can kill animals, especially fish in highly polluted rivers. We highly suggest that Chevron focus its effort on reducing its emission of air pollution by adopting updated technology with less impact on our environment.
Because of the importance of people’s lives firstly in the company, then in the communities in which it operates, and finally the balance of our ecosystem for healthy lives, it is crucial to apply new technology in a continuous spirit of research and development to help reduce environmental problems due to air pollution.
Works cited“Company Profile”. DATAMONITOR. DATAMONITOR, 22 May 2009. Web. 24 Aug 2013. Chevron. Chevron, June 2013. Web. 24 Aug 2013.“Record of Achievement”. Chevron. Chevron, June 2013. 24 Aug 2013. “In the Community”. Chevron. Chevron, June 2013. 24 Aug 2013.