Contributing Monkie G Living Staff Monkies
Published on February 16, 2008
Filed Under Green Report / Media
If you pay attention to the news, you probably already saw this headline – Exxon raked in $40.6 billion dollars in 2007 – a record for any company, worldwide, forever. Their mark included a record-setting $11.7 billion in the last 3 months of the year – or about $120 million in profits per day. Who holds the two previous records? Yep, Exxon. They outpaced the world in 2005 (think Katrina) and 2004 (think Bush re-election).
So what does it mean? For those of us in the US who remember when gas was $1.35/gallon back in 2000, it means that the increase in gas price DOES NOT reflect higher crude oil prices. Nor does it reflect that the world has somehow increased gas consumption so much that Exxon would reap such huge profits. It does reflect, however, the fact that that extra money we’re paying at the pump is not going towards a cleaner future. Rather, it’s going towards continued resource exploitation and continued greenhouse emissions.
Gas and oil pricing is certainly tricky business, and we can expect that — due to uncertain supply issues — we should be paying more at the pump. Several eco-nomists are even telling us that gas will need to reach $5/gallon before Americans really take notice. But just like Halliburton and Blackwater, Exxon is profiteering in the “War on Terror” (and I use this term loosely).
After all, who has posted record-setting profits in 3 of the last 6 years? Exxon. Who helped write the Bush administration’s energy policy that included drilling in ANWR? Exxon. And whose headquarters are in Irving, TX – Bush’s other TX hometown? Exxon. It’s probably already too late to do anything about it – my Bush Countdown calendar shows less than a year left – but maybe more of us will take notice and prevent this from happening in 2009-2013.
Exxon wasn’t the only oil company to post huge profits either. Chevron Corp. and Conoco Phillips also enjoyed high percentage gains in 2007, despite lower margins on “refined” products like gasoline.
To me, it doesn’t matter what makes the price go up — it’s the ridiculous profits that irk me. If companies are making this much from exploiting natural resources, they should be forced to return a significant percentage toward creating a future that is cleaner and more sustainable.
Are any of you candidates listening?