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- Brian Thomas
The intense economic distress of the COVID pandemic created a near-death experience for North American oil and gas companies. Yet it also accelerated a change in the shale business model—a change that produced dramatic returns as prices rose in 2021. Can the shale business model really deliver through the entire cycle—what are the biggest risks for failure? Are current valuations fair and how will the North American system react to rising prices? How should companies think about the tradeoff between reinvestment and returning cash to shareholders? What is the "right" way to return cash to the "right" shareholders? What role will private capital play in future energy investment? How do companies and financiers square the ambition, policies, and investor demand for new energies with the current reality of the hydrocarbon world?