Will Houston adjust its proud moniker to “energy transition capital of the world”? There’s not a place better positioned to take the title, according to Michael Cohen, BP Plc’s chief U.S. economist and head of oil analysis speaking during a recent webinar.

“Houston—think about it—it’s the center of PADD 3, and the Gulf Coast Area is the center of energy transformation,” Cohen said during the webinar hosted by Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy on Aug. 27. “I think it’s hard to come up with any other energy center across the world that is more of a Nexus for that energy transformation other than the Houston and broader Gulf Coast and Louisiana area.”

The thought might seem counterintuitive for a city called home by almost 2,000 oil and gas companies, but it is the fossil fuel industry presence that solidifies Houston’s role in the energy transition to cleaner fuels. Part of the reason is that the green energy sector is not large enough and can’t grow fast enough to move the transition forward at the necessary pace.

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