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Portfolio Diversification

challenges and perspectives from big energy players

Significant technological advancements are creating a revolution in the clean energy space, resulting in a large influx of low cost renewables and a global push toward carbon reduction. This has led to new challenges as well as new opportunities for the big energy conglomerates. What are the primary drivers behind current investments in clean energy? Are there investments made to improve efficiency and competitiveness through new technologies such as in drilling and digitization? How is the push to diversify energy portfolios balanced against the increasing global demand for energy? This panel will explore how three major energy companies have developed strategies to position themselves to be in the forefront during these turbulent times. The panel will also delve into strategies for portfolio diversification, initiatives for new technology development, and visions of the changing role of large energy companies in the coming decades.


Howard J. Herzog (Moderator)

Senior Research Engineer - MIT Energy Initiative

Howard Herzog is a senior research engineer in the MIT Energy Initiative specializing on CO2 capture and storage (CCS) technologies. He was a Coordinating Lead Author for the IPCC Special Report on CCS. He received his undergraduate and graduate education in chemical engineering at MIT.

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Tim Barckholtz

Senior Scientific Advisor, Corporate Strategic Research - ExxonMobil

Tim received a B.S. degree in Chemistry and Math from Trinity University (San Antonio), and a Ph.D. in Inorganic Chemistry from The Ohio State University. Following a post-doctoral appointment at NIST and the University of Colorado, he joined ExxonMobil’s Corporate Strategic Research Labs in 2001. He has held a number of positions in research, crude oil supply chain management, and research management. His current R&D activities are focused on novel methods for CO2 capture using carbonate fuel cells and other emerging technologies. He currently holds the position of Senior Scientific Advisor.

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Tim Polega

Renewable Investment and Technology Leader - Saudi Arabia

Senior executive with more than 15 years in building and restructuring diverse businesses in energy, sales, marketing, construction, engineering and manufacturing and now leads the renewable program for the world’s largest oil company.

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Joseph B. Powell, Phd

Chief Scientist, Chemical Engineering - Shell

Joe Powell is Shell’s Chief Scientist - Chemical Engineering and leads R&D in energy, chemicals, sustainability.  He is Fellow and Director of AIChE, co-inventor on 125 patent applications, co-author of Sustainable Development in the Process Industries:  Cases and Impact (2010).  PhD -  U. Wisconsin (1984); BS - U. Virginia (1978).

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