Can Oil and Solar Mix?

Think that conventional and renewable energy don’t mix? Think again. Aera has proven that oil and renewables can indeed work together to meet California’s energy needs. In fact, our company is at the forefront of innovation and collaboration to usher in a clean energy economy.

Last year, we announced that Aera had joined with GlassPoint Solar to build one of the largest solar energy fields of its kind in California to power our Belridge Oil Field.

Renewable energy will also be used here in Santa Barbara at Aera’s East Cat Canyon project. Many of the buildings at our site will be powered by solar energy, and we are planning to run our tanker trucks on clean-burning natural gas.

Additionally, our project will offset its greenhouse-gas emissions in part with local projects such as carbon farming at our proposed Conservation Area, and the purchase of electric shuttle buses for local nonprofit organizations.

“Aera is committed to safe, responsible operations and is thrilled to extend our environmental leadership by using solar to power our production,” Aera Energy CEO Christina Sistrunk recently remarked. “But while renewables are emerging and growing as an important energy source, leaving oil in the ground is not yet a viable option for meeting all of California’s diverse energy needs.”

For now, and the foreseeable future, oil and natural gas will be essential to producing the fuels on which Santa Barbarans and other Californians rely to get to school and work each day, allow their businesses to grow and thrive, and help bring California-grown food to their dinner tables.

Further, all of the oil produced from Aera’s East Cat Canyon field will be refined in California. That’s important because this local production will reduce the need for importing oil from foreign countries that operate under less rigorous environmental and safety practices.

Aera is proud to be an active part of California’s low carbon future and to lead the industry by adopting bold solutions to deliver essential energy, more efficiently. Whether we are producing that energy in the form of conventional or renewable sources, we will continue to do so safely and responsibly, while meeting and often exceeding regional, state, and federal regulations designed to protect human health and the environment.

More information about Aera’s East Cat Canyon project is available at aeraenergy.com/operations/east-cat-canyon/.

Rick Rust is Aera Energy’s Santa Barbara County representative.

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