By Velda Addison, Hart Energy

As lower commodity prices continue to cut into the profits of oil and gas companies, which have in turn reduced spending and sought cost savings, it is good to hear that some have not closed their coffers to charitable giving.

Among the latest examples is Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM). The Irving, Texas-based company recently donated $100,000 to the American Red Cross North Texas Region. The donation is intended to provide disaster relief assistance following the Dec. 26 storms that left 11 people dead in the Dallas area.

On Christmas Day temperatures were in the 70s in the area, but forecasters warned of bad weather ahead. That came the following evening when tornadoes touched down after sunset in the region, including the hard-hit Garland area where several people lost their lives in tornado-related traffic accidents.

Daylight revealed widespread damage the next day. The National Weather Service confirmed 12 tornadoes swept through the North Texas region, including in Dallas and Collin counties, the Dallas Morning News reported. The twister that left homes in shambles and claimed lives in Garland, Rowlett and Sunnyvale packed wind speeds of up to 180 mph.

“Our thoughts are with all who have been impacted by the devastating tornadoes, and especially with the families who lost loved ones during the holiday season,” Exxon Mobil CEO Rex W. Tillerson said in a news release. “We hope that this donation to the Red Cross will help our neighbors and friends in north Texas during this difficult time.”

The Red Cross is among several organizations providing food, housing and other assistance to those directly impacted by the disaster. Hundreds of homes were damaged.

Exxon Mobil along with XTO Energy, the company’s Fort Worth-based subsidiary, employs more than 2,300 people in the north Texas region.

The company’s donation is one example of its charitable actions.

“ExxonMobil engages in a range of philanthropic activities that advance education, with a focus on math and science in the U.S., promote women as catalysts for development, and combat malaria,” the company said. “In 2014, together with its employees and retirees, Exxon Mobil Corporation, its divisions and affiliates, and the ExxonMobil Foundation provided $278 million in contributions worldwide.”

Let’s hope the giving continues and tough times in the industry don’t prompt the giving spirit to stop— especially if the company is still bringing in profits.

In October, Exxon Mobil reported its third-quarter earnings fell 47%, compared to a year earlier, to an estimated $4.2 billion. Lower commodity prices dealt the biggest blow to its earnings, but its refining business helped by nearly doubling downstream segment earnings.

Velda Addison can be reached at