Skip to main content

Secondary navigation:

Carroll School of Management

Peter Voser

Chief Executive Officer, Royal Dutch Shell

Excerpt from remarks to Boston College’s Chief Executives’ Club of Boston

March 21, 2013

TAKEAWAY: Reducing carbon dioxide emissions

The world needs to follow Americans’ lead and take full advantage of the cleanest-burning fossil fuel, and that’s natural gas. The International Energy Agency estimates that there is enough technically available natural gas globally to last 250 years at today’s consumption levels.

Increased use of natural gas is the biggest single step the world can take today to begin reducing [carbon dioxide] emissions. In generating power, natural gas produces about half the CO2 emissions of coal. As I said earlier, gas is the natural ally of renewables and its supply is increasingly diverse, which enhances energy security.

Second, governments must support development of carbon capture and storage technologies to make fossil fuel use cleaner. This is critical to take CO2 out of the power sector over the next 50 years. It can help meet the demand for cleaner energy at a time when renewables are still being deployed on a relatively small scale. But the technology remains at an early stage of its development. It needs major financial support and strong mandates around the world to get it off the ground.