Jamie Dimon: Get it through your “thick skulls.” We need natural gas

Source: Hot Air

JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon runs an operation that is not opposed to efforts to “fight climate change,” however you care to define that. The company has come out in favor of the Paris Climate Accord and announced plans to reach “zero carbon” in its investment portfolio by 2050. But he’s clearly had it with some government policies that are currently driving the American oil and gas industry toward extinction. In particular, Dimon sees natural gas as a lower-carbon bridge to carry us forward as we work on the expansion of green energy alternatives. This week, he asked reporters, “Why can’t we get it through our thick skulls? America boosting oil and gas production is not against climate change.” It may have been a bit grammatically awkward, but you get the point. Like many of us who keep an eye on the energy debate and as someone who is heavily invested in the subject (both figuratively and literally), Dimon realizes that we need an “all of the above” energy policy and will need one for decades to come. (Business Insider)

JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon said this week that US natural gas production does not conflict with long-term emission reduction targets, Yahoo Finance first reported.

“We should focus on climate. The problem with that is because of high oil and gas prices, the world is turning back on their coal plants. It is dirtier,” Dimon said on a client call Tuesday, per the Saturday report.

“Why can’t we get it through our thick skulls, that if you want to solve climate [change], it is not against climate [change] for America to boost more oil and gas?” he continued.

To be fair to his critics, it’s true that JPMorgan Chase is heavily invested in a number of energy interests. One recent report claims that the company has invested more than $300 billion into companies in the oil and gas industry between 2016 and 2020. But that’s because the industry has historically been a very profitable one and a sound investment. JPMorgan isn’t in business to lose money, after all.

But Dimon is correct when he speaks of how natural gas in particular is not incompatible with the carbon emission reduction goals currently being touted by the government. Natural gas is far cleaner than coal and has already done a great deal to reduce emissions in the United States. It’s also massively cheaper than wind and solar energy when those industries aren’t being propped up by huge taxpayer subsidies. (Which just happened again in the “inflation reduction act.”)

The more recent (relatively) development of liquefied natural gas (LNG) has only expanded the possibilities. Domestically, it offers the opportunity to more quickly and easily ship natural gas to developing areas without needing to have new pipelines constructed. It also presents opportunities for exports, particularly to Europe. These supplies give European countries viable alternatives to Russian supplies.

Along those lines, Joe Weisenthal, a nuts and bolts economist and one of the least partisan people I’ve ever interviewed, made this observation about the Liquified Natural Gas export market and its potential impact not just on the American economy, but the global energy crisis as well.

As it turns out, Dimon has been beating this drum since long before Russia invaded Ukraine.

In his 2021 letter to shareholders, Dimon said “national security demands energy security for ourselves and for our allies overseas,” noting that “using gas to diminish coal consumption is an actionable way to reduce CO2 emissions expeditiously.”

He added that the US needs “immediate approval for additional oil leases and gas pipelines, as well as permits for green energy projects” in order to achieve energy security while also reaching long-term climate goals.

If the American government focuses on nothing but so-called green energy and pushes the oil and gas industry into lockdown mode, the lights are going to go out. It’s just that simple. We don’t produce enough non-fossil fuel energy to keep half of our power grid lit up. This isn’t some political talking point. It’s just math. People on the left might want to listen a bit more carefully to what Jamie Dimon is saying. After all… he’s one of your own. And he didn’t get where he is today by being stupid.