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- Michael Wynne
The world is pursuing a lower-carbon energy mix with great intent and energy companies are grasping new opportunities that encompass much more of the energy value chain than old business models, including closer engagement with end-use customers. Headwinds exist in the form of high costs, the pace of change and ever-changing regulatory burdens. All companies are embracing digitalization and artificial intelligence (AI) seems set to have a significant role in a rapidly changing, data-intense energy value chain. How might AI help unlock new and enhanced opportunities? What methods can help manage the mix of weather-dependent renewable energy and traditional energy sources to ensure low-carbon reliable supplies? How can we navigate and derive advantages from the new proximity between producers and end-users to drive efficiency and reduce cost? What risks or challenges remain to be mitigated or solved in applying AI to energy production? How quickly can we overcome them?
The energy transition places expectations on oil companies to evolve rapidly, given competing and aligned demands to reduce emissions, enhance production, and find uses for exhausted fields. These forces prompt companies to reimagine portfolios as future assets. What contributions might technology and innovation make toward such advances? The broadening energy value chain leaves little room for isolated oil & gas assets, which must now be considered part of an energy ecosystem including hydrogen; carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS); and LNG. What are the integration and optimization pathways, and where can technology contribute? The future requires more integrated, transparent supply chains driving optimization. What part will technology play in a dynamic and agile supply chain? While upstream has been effective at re-tasking staff to meet new challenges, with technology rapidly evolving and disruptive competition emerging, new skill sets are needed to deliver the reimagined upstream. Will technology collaboration become increasingly important and what does this mean for competitive differentiation?