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Unconventionals 2020: Restructured Global Finance and Geopolitics Merge with a Focus on Environmental, Social, and Governance Issues

Monday, 20 July 2020, 8:30 a.m.–10:30 a.m.  |  Austin, Texas

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Course Content

  • Keynote Speaker: Steven Winberg, Assistant Secretary for Fossil Energy, Department of Energy
  • Matt Fox, Chief Operating Officer, ConocoPhillips
  • Kenneth Medlock, James A. Baker, III, and Susan G. Baker Fellow in Energy and Resource Economics and Senior Director, Center for Energy Studies at Rice University
  • Bob Brackett, Senior Vice President, Senior Research Analyst at AB Bernstein
Moderated Panel
Audience Q&A

Production from U.S. based conventional plays has altered the global hydrocarbon marketplace and shifted the strategic geopolitical impact of oil supply and demand. The U.S., once a net importer, is now a net exporter of oil with production exceeding 12.9 MMBoe per day. This level of domestic production insulates the U.S. from many global supply disruptions. Similarly, advances in exploration, drilling, completions, and production are now exported helping to further advance the global energy landscape. Shale 1.0 established unconventional resources as a commercial venture and utilized a drill-to-hold strategy resulted in significant acreage position by many companies. Shale 2.0 gave us pad-development, and lean manufacturing yielding significant volumes of hydrocarbons at acceptable costs from both operators and the service sector.

The year 2020 brings with it another step change for our industry. Shale 3.0 opened with a renewed corporate attention to delivering value and free-cash flow from operations as a strategic driver. That focus rapidly morphed into a shareholder expectation for substantive returns at levels not previously shared by the fossil energy sector. Shale 3.0 recognizes that the Tier 1 resources that brought on the shale revolution now must be managed as late-life field optimizations. Such optimization demands a level of data fidelity, analytic wisdom and innovation not previously commonplace in our industry. Capital efficiency accompanied by free cash flow has become a highly embraced goal for everyone regardless if the “shop floor” is in the field or at main office. Following on from free-cash flow, the expectation of shareholder return has replaced the previous tendency to chase production volumes and reserve additions.

A broadly based shareholder movement together with the energy transition community reminded the industry that we must do more to mitigate the harmful aspects of our environmental footprint. Now, more broadly bundled into a matrix of obligations and challenges, Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) topics have matched the importance of late-life field optimization, parent-child enigmas and the multi-disciplinary puzzle of capital efficiency. Compounding that challenge is awareness that global economies are slowing and demand is softening yielding both uncertainty and depressed commodity pricing. The challenges for 2020 require that we pay more than passive attention to issues like flaring; water use and disposal; methane and volatile organic compounds emissions; carbon capture; clean fuel advancement. Our plenary panel of speakers has been asked share their insights on one or more of the issues that exist for Shale 3.0 and perhaps how technology and social responsibility can be scaled into a sustainable business case by the close of 2020.

Included with Registration


Unconventionals 2020: Restructured Global Finance and Geopolitics Merge with a Focus on Environmental, Social, and Governance Issues
Austin Convention Center
500 E Cesar Chavez St.
Austin, Texas 78701
United States


Skip Rhodes
Skip Rhodes Moderator Pioneer Natural Resources, USA
Douglas Nelson Valleau
Douglas Valleau Moderator Strategia Innovation & Technology Advisors. LLc, USA