Saudi Green Initiative Forum

President and CEO: Oil and gas investment must not be overlooked

Amin Nasser calls on global leaders to invest for the sustainable, affordable energy mix of tomorrow.

President and CEO: Oil and gas investment must not be overlooked

Speaking at the 2023 Saudi Green Initiative (SGI) Forum in Dubai, Amin Nasser, Aramco president and CEO, outlined the pivotal role that oil and gas will continue to play in powering the global economy as part of the energy mix of the future, stating that the industry requires continued and effective strategic investment to do so.


With forecasts showing that demand for oil and gas is expected to continue to rise as the world’s population experiences significant growth, Nasser emphasized the necessity of keeping energy markets in balance while remaining on the net-zero pathway.  


Even with all the renewable energy coming onto the market, it may still not be enough to meet the additional demand we expect to see. What we need is affordable, sustainable, and secure energy.
— Amin Nasser


Two days before the SGI Forum, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia launched the landmark Oil and Gas Decarbonization Charter (OGDC) at COP28, a global industry Charter that aims to support in speeding up climate action and achieving high-scale impact across the oil and gas sectors. 


To date, companies that represent more than 40% of global oil production have signed up to the OGDC, with national oil companies (NOCs) representing over 60% of signatories — the largest number of NOCs to commit to a decarbonization initiative. In addition to being a signatory to the OGDC, Aramco was involved in its development.


The OGDC formalizes calls for the industry to:


  • Align around net-zero by or before 2050
  • Zero-out methane emissions
  • Eliminate routine flaring by 2030
  • Continue to work toward industry best practices in emission reduction.

More investment is needed

During an SGI panel titled “Driving Energy Transitions to a Low-Carbon Future,” Nasser outlined Aramco’s investment in renewables and alternative resources, and the need for continued investment across the energy sector globally following a prolonged period of underinvestment over the past decade. 


“Right now, hydrogen demand has yet to adequately materialize. With blue or green hydrogen, the demand isn’t there for obvious reasons; it is expensive because the infrastructure is costly,” Nasser said. “If you add it all up, the renewables supply over the last 15 years — for example solar and wind — is close to 15 million barrels a day of oil equivalent. It’s simply not enough.” 


He added that it is important that we continue to invest in oil and gas due to the expected increase in demand. “We must also consider the decline; the maturity of the existing fields,” Nasser explained. 


The Global South

Nasser was taking part in a discussion with TotalEnergies chairman and CEO, Patrick Pouyanné, to explore what a lower carbon future energy mix may look like in the face of anticipated growth in demand for oil and gas, with particular consideration of the developing economies of the Global South.


Nasser explained that there could be an estimated 2 billion additional energy users by 2050, 90-95% of whom will be in the Global South. 


“So, it is important to take care of all stakeholders and aim to ensure that we are providing affordable, sustainable, and secure energy for all,” he said.  


The SGI highlights the Kingdom’s goals to reduce emissions, support renewable energy sources and clean hydrogen production, develop the circular carbon economy and afforestation, and protect its natural environment.  


SGI is a whole-of-society initiative, uniting all sustainability efforts in the country to scale up the Kingdom’s climate action. 


Caption for top photo: Amin Nasser emphasized the need to keep energy markets in balance while remaining on the net-zero pathway.


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