Good morning! I'm feeling under the weather so we've got a short edition today.
But first music. This week marked the birthday of the late keyboardist Nicky Hopkins. His work shows up on lots of great songs, including this Rolling Stones gem that takes us into the news...
1 big thing: Exxon adds huge reserves
ExxonMobil said it added 4.5 billion barrels of oil-equivalent to its proven reserves last year, which is over three times what the multinational giant produced in 2018.
Why it matters: The strong performance represents a major bounce back from some high-profile struggles, notably in 2016 when Exxon was forced to cut reserves by over 3 billion barrels.
- It also beats their result from the prior year, when the company added enough to replace 183% of annual production.
- Proven reserves are essentially a metric of what a company can take from the ground under current economic conditions and methods.
The intrigue: The breakdown of the increase also tells a story of Exxon's positioning as it seeks to drive up production sharply over the next half-decade.
- "Exxon has been struggling to arrest production declines over the past two years after a series of strategic mistakes over the past decade," Bloomberg notes.
- The company added volumes in the Permian basin, a sign of its growing footprint in shale.
- Another 1.3 billion primarily came from big offshore fields in Brazil and Guyana. Exxon made huge finds in Guyana and hopes to be producing 750,00 barrels per day there by 2025.
2. Senate Dems look to play climate offense
Senate Democrats are taking new steps to try and parry GOP attacks on the Green New Deal after a troubled rollout that has revealed fissures in their ranks.
What's new: Democratic leaders moved on 2 fronts yesterday...
1. All Democrats are signing onto a resolution stating human-cased climate change is real and deserves "immediate action," per a leadership source.
2. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer went after White House plans to create a new panel that would question consensus views on climate science.
- "I’m announcing that if the Trump Administration moves forward with this fake climate panel, we will be introducing legislation to defund it," Schumer said on the floor.
Why it matters: Democrats are seeking to coalesce around a strategy as Republicans look to put them in a tough political spot with the GND.
- The GND has uncertain support among Senate Democrats despite co-sponsorship from a half-dozen of them running for president.
What they're saying: Yesterday Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told reporters in the Capitol that he planned to bring up the GND at some point before the August break.
- He chided Democrats over reports of plans to vote "present" on the measure.
- “The only question I would ask is, if this is such a popular thing to do and so necessary, why would one want to dodge the vote,” he said.
The intrigue: Per Politico, Democrats hope to put pressure on Republicans facing re-election with the resolution on acknowledging climate change.
- "Targets could include moderates like Sens. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine), both up for reelection in 2020," notes Politico, which first reported on the effort yesterday.
3. Etsy vows to offset delivery emissions
Axios' Amy Harder reports ... Etsy is offsetting all of its carbon dioxide emissions from shipping at an annual cost of less than $1 million, the company is announcing today.
The big picture: The e-commerce company is the latest in corporate America to ramp up action on climate change in response to the public’s growing awareness on the issue and President Trump’s dismissal of it.
Details: The company is investing in clean-energy and environmental restoration with 3 projects around the world that it says compensates for its shipping emissions.
- Preserving a forest in Minnesota.
- Subsidizing wind and solar energy in India.
- Subsidizing the use of cleaner, alternative chemicals in the auto industry.
“The initial thinking was that we would create an option at checkout that allows buyers to choose to offset the cost of shipping a package. When I saw it was less than a penny per package, why on Earth would we add a checkbox, why don’t we just do it.”— Josh Silverman, Etsy CEO, to Axios
4. Lightning round: oil markets, coal, EVs
Crude oil: Via Reuters, "Oil prices rose on Wednesday after a report of declining U.S. crude inventories and as producer club OPEC seemed to stick to its supply cuts despite pressure from U.S. President Donald Trump."
- Plus, CNBC reports that Saudi oil minister Khalid al-Falih said he's "leaning toward the likelihood" that OPEC's supply-limiting deal with Russia will be extended into the second half of the year.
Coal: In our Expert Voices section, Sunrise Project's Justin Guay unpacks a report showing that more than 100 globally significant financial institutions — those with at least $10 billion in assets under management — have now restricted access to financing for the coal industry.
Cars: CNN explores Porsche's latest move into electric vehicles. "The German luxury carmaker said Tuesday that it will release an electric version of the Macan SUV, its most popular model, in the next few years," they report.
5. Chart of the day: energy investors
Axios' Dion Rabouin writes in his Axios Markets newsletters (sign up here) ... Many have expressed worry over campaigns to get asset managers to move away from oil and other fossil fuels through boycotts and divestment, according to David Sheppard in the Financial Times.
Yes, but: Since the beginning of 2019 the industry has faced a far more immediate problem, per FT.
What's happening: "Investors, regardless of their environmental view of 'Big Oil,' appear to already be losing faith in an industry roiled by both short and long-term challenges that few are certain how will play out," FT reports.
Read more of Dion's piece here.
6. Quote of the day
"It’s the most unique job in the world."
Who said it: Gene Munster of the VC firm Loup Ventures in remarks to Bloomberg.
The context: He's referring to the (still unknown) lawyer tasked with vetting Tesla CEO Elon Musk's tweets under a settlement with regulators last year.
Why it matters: This week has brought a high-profile reminder of what a tough job this must be when more of Musk's tweets landed him in hot water.
- ICYMI, the Securities and Exchange Commission earlier this week asked a federal judge to hold Tesla CEO Elon Musk in contempt for violating a settlement reached last year with the agency.