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Lashier tells Phillips 66 story on industry’s biggest stage

Speaking at the world’s top annual energy conference, President and Chief Operating Officer Mark Lashier said Phillips 66 is leveraging its refining position and know-how to compete in a lower-carbon future, with a focus on renewable fuels, batteries, hydrogen and carbon capture. 

“You have to bring to the table every advantage you have and deliver on that,” said Lashier, who spoke Tuesday at the CERAWeek by S&P Global conference in Houston. 

Also appearing at CERAWeek was Zhanna Golodryga, Senior Vice President and Chief Digital and Administrative Officer, who headlined one of a series of innovation discussions on Wednesday. Golodryga’s session focused on digital transformation at Phillips 66, the value it has created and the company’s collaboration with Amazon Web Services. 

Central to that effort, she said, was creating a digitally connected enterprise with a focus on culture change led by the company’s values. Together, she said, this will deliver “digital at scale” across Phillips 66 global assets. 


Back to in-person after 2 years 

CERAWeek brings together world leaders, energy ministers and the oil and gas industry’s most senior executives to discuss the future of global energy. It returned in-person to Houston Monday after a two-year hiatus due to the coronavirus pandemic.  

Joining Lashier on the “Reinventing the Downstream” panel were Walter Canova, Vice President of Refining and Industrial Processes for Colombia’s Ecopetrol, and Sandeep Sayal, Vice President of Downstream Energy Research for S&P Global. 

So what does the refinery of the future look like?  

Lashier said it could be a lot like Humber, where the four technologies in the company’s Emerging Energy portfolio all play a role, or Rodeo, where many factors, including geography, have resulted in a plan to convert a traditional refinery into one of the world’s largest renewable fuels facilities. 


New technologies and fossil fuels 

Battery technologies also figure prominently in the company’s plans, Lashier said, with its production of needle coke, used in batteries to power electric vehicles, and its investment in battery materials manufacturer NOVONIX.  

Phillips 66 has also long been a large consumer of hydrogen, leading the company to forge ahead in hydrogen-related lower-carbon technologies, he said. That includes stations in Switzerland that market green hydrogen as a transportation fuel and a commitment to team up with H2 Energy to develop fueling stations in Europe.  

Still, Lashier said there is no energy source out there that will be able to entirely replace fossil fuels anytime soon. “You’re not going to be able to replace all the diesel or the jet fuel with renewables,” he said.  

Which means that capturing carbon is critical for the refining industry. “Carbon capture is going to be very important for the foreseeable future, so we can continue to access the kinds of high-energy and -density hydrocarbons that we’re all used to using,” said Lashier.