De­part­ing Dudley claims suc­ces­sor is a ‘ter­rific choice’ to lead firm

The Press and Journal (Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire) - - BUSINESS -

BP has cred­ited Bernard Looney with help­ing the firm make strides on gen­der diver­sity, meth­ane emis­sions and men­tal­health aware­ness.

In a re­cent in­ter­view with The P&J, Mr Looney said his fa­ther suf­fered from de­pres­sion and that he was pas­sion­ate about re­mov­ing the “stigma” around men­tal health.

BP said Mr Looney had ini­ti­ated a com­pany-wide di­a­logue on the sub­ject.

In his cur­rent role as head of up­stream, Mr Looney over­sees the pro­duc­tion of 2.6 mil­lion bar­rels of oil equiv­a­lent per day, and the ac­tiv­i­ties of 17,000 peo­ple across 30 coun­tries.

He has led BP into new mar­kets, in­clud­ing Mau­ri­ta­nia and Sene­gal, and has been a key fig­ure in ef­forts to re­bal­ance the com­pany’s up­stream port­fo­lio.

In the UK North Sea, BP sold its stakes in three fields to Ser­ica En­ergy last year, but in­creased its eq­uity in the giant Clair field as part of a deal with Cono­coPhillips.

BP chair­man Helge Lund said Mr Looney had “all the right qual­i­ties” to lead BP through what he de­scribed as a “trans­for­ma­tional era”.

Cur­rent group CEO Bob Dudley de­scribed Mr Looney as a “ter­rific choice” to lead the com­pany, say­ing of his suc­ces­sor: “He knows BP and our in­dus­try as well as any­one but is cre­ative and not bound by tra­di­tional ways of work­ing.

“I have no doubt that he will thought­fully lead BP through the tran­si­tion to a low car­bon fu­ture.”

The Lon­don-listed firm has be­come a prime tar­get for cli­mate change demon­stra­tors who want oil com­pa­nies to stop ex­plor­ing for new re­serves.

Pro­test­ers dis­rupted the firm’s an­nual gen­eral meet­ing in Aberdeen ear­lier this year, and Green­peace ac­tivists de­layed a drilling rig’s jour­ney to one of BP’s North Sea fields for sev­eral days.

This week, the Royal Shake­speare Com­pany said it was break­ing off its part­ner­ship with BP amid cli­mate change con­cerns.

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