Big oil and politics have a close relationship. This combination of money and policy influence many key factors of the global economy. For example, the automotive and aeronautical industry are completely reliant on petroleum fuels, and policy helps shape these industries. The clean energy sector struggles as a result of big oil and politics. Big oil companies like Exxon make enormous campaign contributions and interest groups donations. This buys the support of the politician upon their victory. Top lobbyists put even more pressure on politicians to satisfy the oil companies. Tax breaks and unlimited access to politicians are two of the biggest resources the oil companies have at their disposal. Lobbyists for companies like Ford, Lockheed Martin, Boeing, and Toyota also must also comply with big oil desires so their products can have fuel. These companies also receive most of their money from the government and military contracts, meaning big oil is inherently necessary to their funding and construction. These relationships are not only present in the US government, but of nations across the globe that contribute to the global economy

The potential for clean energy conversion is in humanity’s grasp. However, clean energy companies and researchers have access to nowhere near the amount of resources big oil can use. By working their way into politics, oil companies can easily suppress clean energy conversion efforts. For example, the Trump Administration’s cabinet has several big oil CEO’s, including Rex Tillerson of Exxon being appointed to Secretary of State. Policy, foreign and domestic, is being influenced by a man who is naturally biased toward oil development and sale. The same situation has presented itself in Australia. Clean energy investments went down 70% in 2016 and the nation’s government tried to get a foothold in energy sectors. This further highlights the deep roots of global oil power over politics.






Slocum, Tyson. “Offshore Drilling Will Enrich Big Oil Companies and Hurt the Middle Class.” Offshore Drilling, edited by Margaret Haerens, Greenhaven Press, 2010. Opposing Viewpoints. Opposing Viewpoints in Context, Accessed 7 Feb. 2017. Originally published as “Oil Companies Escape Billions in Royalty Payments to Americans,”, 30 July 2008.

“U.S. Foreign Policy and the Axis of Oil.” Weekend Edition Sunday, 14 Jan. 2007. Global Issues in Context, Accessed 7 Feb. 2017.

“Trump entrusts foreign policy to Texas oil man.” EFE World News Service, 13 Dec. 2016. Global Issues in Context, Accessed 7 Feb. 2017.

“Move to clean energy requires smart policy.” Age [Melbourne, Australia], 24 Sept. 2016, p. 28. Global Issues in Context, Accessed 12 Feb. 2017.

“Dirty or clean, politics drive energy deals.” Globe & Mail [Toronto, Canada], 4 July 2016, p. A9. Global Issues in Context, Accessed 12 Feb. 2017.

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February 14, 2017 5:28 pm

Wow Will, good post. I somewhat understand this topic, but I do kno that it is very important in the world today. It’s an issue that needs to be resolved, and soon, so thank you for looking into this

February 13, 2017 6:08 pm

This is a great topic, and a very prevalent issue right now. I think it would be interesting if you also researched clean energy solutions that other countries are developing. As you said, big oil and politics is an international problem, and it will take international solutions.

February 13, 2017 4:29 pm

Hey Will, great post. I’m going to be honest your topic went right over my head. But I do understand that this is a problem that is faced on a global scale and that some kids Jed of action needs to be taken soon.

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