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ExxonMobil Corp. is actively considering whether to invest in electric-charging stations, according to an Atlantic Council report published this week.

Why it matters: Most other international oil and gas companies have at least token investments in electric-charging infrastructure, but Exxon has been an outlier among its peers in this space. Exxon's possible change of heart reflects Big Oil’s recognition that the world is transitioning away (albeit slowly) from oil-powered cars as part of a broader shift in the energy industry's response to climate change.

Details: The nugget is included in a table within a new 14-page report by David Koranyi, a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council. Koranyi told Axios that he spoke with Exxon officials, along with officials at other companies, as he was writing the paper on oil companies' diversification away from their traditional products.

  • Exxon said that “they are actively considering investments into EV charging infrastructure,” according to Koranyi.
  • Exxon did not immediately respond to an Axios request for comment.

The big picture: Andrew Logan, who directs the oil and gas program at Ceres, a nonprofit that advocates more sustainable investing, said this would be a surprise move, in part because Exxon has been among the least ambitious with its forecasts on adoption rates of electric cars — less so than even OPEC, the cartel of Middle Eastern oil-producing nations.

“While this would be a small step, it would be a sign that Exxon — long the most bearish of the oil majors on electric vehicles — is capable of changing its mind. Along with recent shifts like the company's decision to join OGCI [the Oil and Gas Climate Initiative] and set methane reduction targets, steps the company had long resisted, this move suggests that a cultural shift may be underway.”
— Andrew Logan, Ceres

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Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

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  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3:00 p.m. ET: 7,094,145 — Total deaths: 204,607 — Total recoveries: 2,750,459 — Total tests: 100,492,536Map.
  3. States: 3 states set single-day coronavirus case records last week — New York daily cases top 1,000 for first time since June.
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3 states set single-day coronavirus case records last week

Data: Compiled by Axios; Map: Danielle Alberti/Axios

Utah, North Carolina and Wyoming set new highs last week for coronavirus infections recorded in a single day, according to the COVID Tracking Project (CTP) and state health departments. Utah and Wyoming surpassed records set the previous week.

Why it matters: Record case highs have usually meant that more hospitalizations and other serious outcomes are on the way, CTP's latest weekly update notes.