Exxon and Chad-Cameron Pipeline

7344 Words Jul 22nd, 2013 30 Pages
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EXXONMOBIL AND THE CHAD CAMEROON PIPELINE In November 1999, ExxonMobil CEO Lee Raymond faced the potential collapse of the Chad/Cameroon Oil Pipeline project on which the company was about to embark. Both Royal Dutch/Shell and France’s TotalFinaElf, ExxonMobil’s partners in the Pipeline Consortium, had just withdrawn, citing environmental concerns among other things and leaving its future temporarily in doubt. This withdrawal delighted many environmental groups long opposed to the pipeline. A spokesperson for the Rainforest Action Network (RAN), a grassroots environmental organization and longtime pipeline opponent, said in a press release: Based on its experience in Nigeria, Royal Dutch/Shell recognizes a bad situation when it
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(Ironically, the Exxon Mobil merger reassembled the legendary Standard Oil, John Rockefeller’s company. In 1911, antitrust authorities forced Standard Oil to break into two companies: Standard Oil of New Jersey, which later became Exxon, and Standard Oil of New York, which later became Mobil.) Nonetheless, the two companies had very different images in the oil industry. Mobil was seen as having a “combative feistiness,” whereas Exxon had a “relentlessly efficient stuffiness.”5 Because of the size of the companies, the merger was scrutinized by antitrust regulators and, in order to complete the merger, both companies had to get rid of certain operations, including almost 2,500 service stations in the United States and Europe. By the mere fact that a growing population of environmentally concerned people worldwide was skeptical of large oil companies and their promotion of fossil fuel use, both Exxon and Mobil struggled with their public image. Exxon had the most damage to contain, however, because of the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill in Alaska’s Prince William Sound, when the single-hulled oil tanker, while dodging icebergs, hit a reef outside the shipping lane. The
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