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Chevron's CEO: Affordable Energy Is Crucial

By JONATHAN FAHEY

NEW YORK (AP) â¿¿ Chevron CEO John Watson notices something important as he visits his company's operations around the globe: Governments everywhere find high energy prices much scarier than the threat of global warming.

And that means the world will need a lot more oil and gas in the years to come.

To meet that demand, Chevron is in the midst of an enormous cycle of investment aimed at extracting oil and gas from wherever it hides in the earth's crust.

Chevron Corp., based in San Ramon, Calif., is the second largest investor-owned oil and gas company in the world, and the third largest American company of any type as measured by revenue and profit. Over the last year, Chevron has earned $24 billion on revenue of $231 billion.

Every day, the company produces the equivalent of 2.7 million barrels of oil and gas, mostly outside the U.S.

Next year Chevron will invest $33 billion â¿¿ more than it ever has â¿¿ to drill wells, erect platforms, build refineries and scan for undiscovered deposits of oil and gas. Among its biggest projects: A natural gas operation in Australia that will ultimately cost Chevron and its partners $65 billion to build. Also planned are three deep-water drilling and production projects in the Gulf of Mexico that will cost $16 billion.

Watson, a 55-year-old California native and Chevron lifer, joined the company in 1980 as a financial analyst. Before becoming CEO in 2010 he was vice chairman in charge of strategic planning, business development and mergers and acquisitions. He also ran the company's international exploration and production business, led the company's integration with Texaco and was CFO.

Watson has helped shape Chevron into the best performing major oil company in the world by several financial benchmarks, including the profit it makes for each barrel of oil it sells.

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