Kelcy Warren on How Natural Gas
and Oil Can Serve Future Energy Needs

As many parts of the world are experiencing record-breaking cold temperatures and heavy amounts of snow, our thoughts naturally turn to energy supplies. Energy is something that is always in the news, but never more so than now, when political and economic events are making energy scarce in Europe and other parts of the world. No matter where other priorities lie, one thing is clear. Accessing cheap and reliable energy is crucial to our economic growth and quality of life, not only here in the U.S., but everywhere on earth.

World Energy Needs

Currently, oil and natural gas from fossil fuels provide around 80% of energy in the world. As the number of inhabitants increases, the world’s energy needs will also increase. When you factor in the exponential rise in the world’s reliance of electronics, it’s easy to see that energy demands will grow at least in step with population growth, or even more.

At this time, nearly three billion people worldwide live in energy poverty, without access to reliable electricity. The World Health Organization estimates that almost four million people each year die from diseases linked to household pollution from heating and cooking with low quality and/or dangerous fuel such as crop waste, wood, and dung.

This is at least in part because major banks, which have access to the majority of global financing, make it harder for developing countries to get support for fossil fuel infrastructure.

First world nations that have built their economies on oil, natural gases, and coal are demanding drastic reductions in production and usage of these fuels. Policies and financing that limit fossil fuel availability is already negatively impacting the living standards of the poor and greatly limiting their economic opportunities. Not to mention, that the U.S. and its allies are also exposed to serious geopolitical risk from energy limitations.

Energy Transfer exports the most natural gas liquids of any country or company, totaling approximately 20% of global natural gas liquids market. “We can count ourselves lucky to have huge reserves of oil and gas throughout the U.S., which is abundant enough to support our needs here at home as well as supply international markets for many years to come,” says Kelcy Warren, who is the Executive Chairman of Energy Transfer. Warren continues, “We are proud that we can help these developing nations through our natural-gas export operations. We believe that increasing global natural gas availability can have the greatest positive impact on reducing carbon emissions.”

Support for a Mix of Diverse Energy Sources

“Natural gas forms the foundation for a diverse mix of energy sources,” Warren says. As the world’s energy resources evolve, natural gas will play a significant role—along with other sources—in meeting the future’s energy needs.

Europe’s energy policies in recent decades have highlighted the dangers of decreasing domestic supply of fossil fuels and relying too heavily upon renewable energy sources. “There is a straightforward solution,” says Kelcy Warren. “Use existing fossil fuel resources to create new technologies that will support the development and expansion of an extensive range of global energy resources.”

The fastest and most efficient way to reduce carbon emissions is to allow more natural gas supplies to be produced, exported, and to improve the quality and life of billions of people in developing countries around the globe.

We are blessed as a nation to have huge natural gas reserves. “These can be safely produced and sustained for decades, supporting our economy and the increasing demand for reliable energy around the world. This is something Americans should be aware of all year,” says Warren.

Kelcy Warren is a veteran of the oil and gas industry, having worked in it for more than two decades. He serves on several boards, including SemGroup and CrossTex Energy, as well as on the advisory board of the Arlington branch of the University of Texas. Energy Transfer was founded by Kelcy Warren and his partner, Ray Davis in 1996. Since then, with operations in 18 states, Energy Transfer has become one of the top publicly-traded energy companies, moving 30% of the U.S.’s natural gas and oil.