President Biden is heading to Saudi Arabia next month amidst a global energy crisis. The trip is nothing new. For decades when faced with an oil crisis, presidents from both political parties have turned to Saudi Arabia.
That’s because it’s one of the key players in the global oil market, producing about 10% of the world’s oil.
For a deep dive into the unique role that Saudi Arabia plays in global oil markets, host Jason Bordoff spoke with Dr. Ibrahim AlMuhanna. He’s the vice chairman of the Saudi Association for Energy Economics and a longtime advisor to the Ministry of Energy for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Between 1989 and 2017, he worked closely with four successive energy ministers, playing a central role in developing Saudi energy policy and communicating it to the outside world. His new book “Oil Leaders: An Insider’s Account of Four Decades of Saudi Arabia and OPEC's Global Energy Policy” is the latest in the Center on Global Energy Policy book series published through Columbia University Press.
The pair discussed Dr. AlMuhanna’s career overseeing consequential energy decisions and the role of Saudi Arabia in global energy markets now and moving forward.
The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) continues to influence global energy systems, despite challenges to its unity and market share. Just this year, global leaders called upon OPEC to increase output to bring down oil prices.
But the organization comes under tremendous scrutiny for many of the decisions it makes, with some arguing that it has not done enough to address oil price spikes and others questioning its role generally.
For a look at how OPEC is navigating the current oil crisis and the broader clean energy transition, host Jason Bordoff spoke with His Excellency Mohammad Barkindo.
Barkindo has served as secretary general of OPEC for the last six years, with his term set to end in July. His tenure at OPEC has coincided with major upheavals in the global oil market, including the supply glut of the mid-2010s, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the war in Ukraine. He previously represented Nigeria at OPEC and held various senior roles at the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation.
The pair discussed OPEC’s role amid political turmoil, rapidly fluctuating energy markets, changes within the oil industry, along with Barkindo’s reflections on his time at OPEC’s helm.
Earlier this year, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) proposed new regulations that would require publicly-traded companies to estimate their greenhouse gas emissions and disclose certain climate risks.
The mandated rules around disclosure would be unprecedented in the United States and come at a time when investors are increasingly concerned about companies’ environmental, social, and governance (ESG) commitments. But the controversial measure is stirring up complaints – from those who say it goes too far, and others who say it doesn’t go far enough.
For deeper insight into the SEC’s proposed rules, host Bill Loveless spoke with Dr. Shivaram Rajgopal, the Kester and Byrnes Professor of Accounting and Auditing at Columbia Business School.
Shivaram was previously a faculty member at Duke University, Emory University and the University of Washington, and his work is frequently cited in outlets like The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Bloomberg, and Forbes.
Together, they discuss some of the key provisions in the proposal and the broader implications it could have for the future of corporate climate accountability.