The Greater Houston Partnership on June 29 unveiled a strategic regional blueprint for leading the global energy transition, which the group said will solidify Houston’s role as the global energy capital in a low-carbon world.

The partnership, which represents approximately 900 member organizations and one-fifth of the region’s workforce, developed the comprehensive plan to guide the Houston Energy Transition Initiative. The plan was also developed in conjunction with the Center for Houston’s Future and McKinsey with input from more than 60 leaders of industry, investment, government and academia, according to a release from the group. 

“The energy transition presents tremendous opportunities for Houston to leverage our energy leadership to accelerate global solutions for a low-carbon future,” commented Bobby Tudor, chair of the initiative and chairman at Tudor, Pickering, Holt & Co. (TPH), in the release.

In recent weeks, more than 35 companies operating in Houston, including a number of notable energy firms, have signed on to a letter of support for the Houston Energy Transition Initiative.

“Houstonians have a long history of solving the world’s greatest challenges,” Tudor continued. “Today, Houston is poised to lead the effort to meet growing global demand for energy while simultaneously dramatically lowering climate-changing greenhouse gas emissions. I believe Houston has the expertise and drive to lead the global energy transition.”

Watch a recent interview with Boddy Tudor discussing Exxon Mobil’s Proposed Carbon Capture Project for Houston.

PATH FORWARD: Bobby Tudor Applauds Exxon Mobil’s Proposed Carbon Capture Project for Houston

The Houston Energy Transition Initiative strategic plan highlights actions across value chains in three domains:

  • Jumpstart and scale up emerging carbon-reduction sectors where Houston has a distinct advantage;
  • Focus on attracting and supporting companies in New Energy industries including wind energy, solar power and biofuels, along with advancing the renewable natural gas and low-carbon LNG value chains; and
  • Deploy cross-cutting initiatives to attract and grow companies in additional energy value-chains, ranging from electric vehicle systems to the decarbonization of natural gas and oil, from petrochemicals to nature-based solutions, and from energy efficiency technologies to geothermal energy production.

In a report accompanying the announcement, McKinsey analysis estimates that as many as 560,000 jobs could be created by 2050 in the region by supporting these low-carbon technologies, industrial investments, innovation eco-systems, government policies and reskilling of talent. 

“I am pleased to see the concerted and collaborative momentum that now exists in Houston around energy transition,” added Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner in the release. “In leading the transition, our city will build upon its long history in the energy and chemical industries, provide new opportunities for our workforce, and leverage our assets and existing expertise.”

Examples of Houston Energy Transition Initiative opportunities include carbon capture, use and storage, hydrogen production and application, the circular economy (specifically plastics recycling) and energy storage solutions including battery technology. Exxon Mobil’s proposal for a $100 billion carbon capture innovation zone centered along the Houston Ship Channel is also an example of the kind of major investment envisioned in this part of the strategy.