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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

BP is writing down the value of its assets by up to $17.5 billion and is slashing its long-term oil price assumptions as it projects the coronavirus pandemic will have an "enduring impact on the global economy."

Why it matters: Monday's announcement signals how one of the world's most powerful energy companies sees COVID-19 changing the industry's landscape in lasting ways.

  • "BP's management ... has a growing expectation that the aftermath of the pandemic will accelerate the pace of transition to a lower carbon economy and energy system, as countries seek to ‘build back better’ so that their economies will be more resilient in the future," the company said.
  • CEO Bernard Looney, in a statement, said the pandemic reinforces BP's long-term climate plan announced in February to shift its business toward low-carbon sources and become a "net zero" company over several decades.

The big picture: The oil-and-gas giant, in announcing the second-quarter charges and write-offs, sees the potential for weaker energy demand for a "sustained period."

  • BP is also reviewing whether to develop some of its discoveries, the company added when announcing that it cut its long-term oil price assumption by roughly 27%.
  • The company now sees Brent crude prices averaging $55-per-barrel in the 2021–2050 period, and lowered its long-term natural gas price forecast sharply too.

Go deeper

Sep 22, 2020 - Health

U.S. reaches 200,000 coronavirus deaths

Expand chart
Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Chart: Axios Visuals

The coronavirus has now killed 200,000 Americans, according to Johns Hopkins data.

The big picture: Whatever context you try to put this in, it is a catastrophe of historic proportions — and is yet another reminder of America's horrific failure to contain the virus.

Sep 22, 2020 - Health

200,000 Americans gone too soon

Data: Johns Hopkins; Chart: Axios Visuals

Today marks another devastating milestone in the 2020 history books:

The state of play: February 29: First reported U.S. coronavirus death; May 23: U.S. death toll hits 100,000; September 22: U.S. death toll hits 200,000, according to the Johns Hopkins tracker.

Updated Oct 7, 2020 - Health

World coronavirus updates

Expand chart
Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Axios Visuals

New Zealand now has active no coronavirus cases in the community after the final six people linked to the Auckland cluster recovered, the country's Health Ministry confirmed in an email Wednesday.

The big picture: The country's second outbreak won't officially be declared closed until there have been "no new cases for two incubation periods," the ministry said. Auckland will join the rest of NZ in enjoying no domestic restrictions from late Wednesday, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said, declaring that NZ had "beat the virus again."

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