Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:CRM) 2018 Annual Meeting of Shareholders May 30, 2018 10:30 AM ET
Darren Woods - Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Jeff Woodbury - Vice President of Investor Relations, Corporate Secretary
Paula Buckley - Computershare Trust Company
Frank Rauscher - Aquinas Associates
Richard Brooks - ExxonMobil
Good morning, everybody. Can I ask that you please take your seats please? It’s nice to see everyone. Thank you for coming. I’d like to bring our meeting to order. I am Darren Woods, Chairman and CEO of ExxonMobil. And I am very pleased to welcome all of you this morning, including our shareholders who are participating via the Internet.
For those of you who are with us this morning, I hope you’ve had a chance to speak to some of our employees out front on some of the booths. In fact, let me just take a moment. I’d like to ask all of our employees to please stand. You beat me to it. These men and women are among the 70,000 people around the world who are working for all of you. And I think recognizing with a warm round of applause was very appropriate, so thank you for that.
The results that I will share with you today are their results. And I can tell you I am very privileged to represent them and to speak on their behalf. Next to me is, Jeff Woodbury, the Vice President of Investor Relations and the Corporate Secretary. Jeff will help run our meeting this morning. And before I turn it over to Jeff, I would like to provide an outline of today’s proceedings.
Jeff is going to begin by summarizing the guideline for the meeting, including how we recognized. He will also outline the proposals to be covered in the process for voting on them. He will then confirm that there is a quorum, which allows me to begin the business of the meeting.
I am going to start with an overview of ExxonMobil’s work, our business plans and our vision for the future. The next, I will cover the items of business and any remaining votes to be cast, proposal will be closed, the formal business of the meeting will conclude. And then the inspectors of election will provide preliminary voting results. We’re then going to have a very brief period for any questions regarding our business. Following this discussion, I will close the meeting with a few remarks.
So at this time, let me turn the meeting over to Jeff.
Thank you, Darren. Ladies and gentlemen, good morning. I would first like to take this opportunity to familiarize everyone with the safety features of the auditorium. In case of an emergency, we will be notified through the public address system. Emergency exits for the ground level, as shown on the screen behind me, are situated at the rear of the auditorium where you entered and down in front on either side. If we need evacuate, please proceed to the nearest exit and the personnel will guide you to the best way out.
In addition, for safety reasons, we ask that you do not stand in the isles or in the back of the hall, and please do not block exist. To ensure that the meeting is productive and conducted in the interest of all shareholders, there are certain guidelines governing this event. In the program, you’ll find the rules of conduct to ensure an orderly meeting. That respects the rights of all participants. Disruptions of a speaker or the Chairman are not permitted, and will be viewed as an intentional interference with the meeting. Only shareholders as of the record date or their properly appointed proxies will be entitled to speak during the meeting.
The laws of New Jersey where Exxon Mobil is incorporated provide that no business can be brought up for a go unless proper notice has been given to all shareholders. Therefore, in the fairness to other shareholders not in attendance and in keeping with the laws that govern our annual meeting, formal business at today’s meaning is restricted to items included in this year’s proxy statement.
In order to present a proposal, you must have check-in at the missions-desk in the lobby and verify that you are the proponent or a duly authorized proxy under New Jersey law. Presenters whose credentials have been verified will be given a blue presenter’s pass. If not that the proponent nor the authorized proxy is checked in, we will presume the proponent is not present, and I will move proposal for the purposes of the orderly conduct of the meeting, and so that the shareholder votes cast maybe recorded. However, I will not be acting as a representative of the proponent.
The authorized presenter of the shareholder proposal will have up to two minutes to present the proposal, while the usher holds the microphone. Time may not be shared with another speaker, and no second to the motion is required. Now during the discussion period, if you wish to make comments, please fill out a speaker identification card that is included in your program provided to you as you entered the lobby. This card confirms that you meet the requirements to speak at this meeting. Move to a reserved aisle seat remain seated and raise your hand holding your speaker identification card to indicate that you wish to speak. When recognized, give you completed speaker card to the usher. Please stand and begin by stating your name. You may speak for up to two minus, while the usher holds the microphone. We request that individual shareholders respect the rights of others to speak, and please keep your comments brief.
We ask that matters of personal interest, not relevant to all shareholders, be raise directly with appropriate company representatives outside of the Annual Meeting. Due to the need to conclude the meeting within a reasonable period, we cannot assure that every shareholder who wishes to speak will be able to do so. As we have done in the past, we have provided a timing system with lights that will helps speakers manage their time. I would now like to demonstrate the system.
When speaker is recognized and an usher is arrived with a microphone, a green light will come on at the displays on both sides of the stage. The hall microphones will be activated only after the speaker has been recognized. When the speakers’ time remaining reaches 30 seconds, a yellow light will turn on. A red light will indicate that the speaker is at the end of the time allowed. And at that point, we ask that you conclude your comments.
As we typically know at the outset of the similar meetings, I’d like to draw your attention to our cautionary statement. This statement contains information regarding today's presentation and discussion. You may also refer to our corporate Web site for additional information on factors affecting future results, as well as supplemental information defining key terms that we’ll use throughout the meeting today.
Shown here is the list of proposals that will be presented and voted on this morning. There are seven items of business. We’ll begin with the three board proposals regarding the election of directors, ratification of independent auditors and an advisory vote, to approve executive compensation. We will continue with the four shareholder proposals shown on the proxy statement. Proponents of shareholder proposals or their authorized proxy will introduce their proposal.
It’s the policy of the corporation to provide confidential voting to shareholders. If you didn’t include comments on your vote, your proxy card hasn’t been seen by the Company. Anyone wishing to vote in secrete at this meeting can obtain an envelope from the ushers. Proxy cards will be collected later in the meeting.
A list of shareholders entitled to vote is available for your inspection. If anybody wishes to examine this list, an usher will direct you to the proper location. Paula Buckley of Computershare Trust has been appointed the inspector of election for this meeting. She has taken an oath of office that will be delivered to the Secretary for filing with the minutes. Notice for this meeting has been properly given. The inspector of election has determined that a quorum is present. There are 3.6 billion shares represented at this meeting that equates to approximately 85% of outstanding shares entitled to vote.
So now, I’ll turn the meeting back to the Chairman. Thank you.
Thank you, Jeff. I direct that the determined number of shares entitled to vote be filed with the minutes. I declare a quorum present and the meeting ready for business.
And before I begin the business review, I want to take some time to share some personal reflections. This is my second Annual Meeting as Chairman, but my first after a full year on the job. I’ve spent the year meeting with employees, world leaders and many others, people with a wide range of views on issues important to our company. I’ve had the opportunity to visit many of our facilities and operations. I made it to Antwerp and Rotterdam to see our new expansions; to Guyana where we’re making exciting deepwater discoveries; to the Gulf Coast to thank the many heroes who helped with hurricane recovery. All these trips and varied experiences left me with one feeling, a very deep sense of pride.
We’ve got incredible people doing incredible work, creating the energy and making the products, and improve the lives of billions. This is more than just a company. This is a community of dedicated people committed to making the world better. And I would tell you, I'm very proud to be part of it, and I hope that some of you take pride in being part of the too. Our team has spent in the last year working very hard to develop opportunities and get the most out of our businesses. We're focused on the fundamentals and on leveraging our competitive advantages to grow shareholder value. We're committed to this.
We're also committed to be a part of the solution in addressing the risk of climate change and other pressing societal challenges. Our plans for the future, which I'll share with you today, reflect these commitments. By 2025 our plans has the potential to more than double our earnings, and continue our investments in game changing lower emissions technologies. Through record discoveries, world class acquisitions and growing access to attractive markets, we've put together the best portfolio of new investments since the merger of Exxon Mobil, nearly 20 years ago.
Our investments are robust to a wide range of price environments, and they leverage our competitive advantages and technology, integration and most importantly, our people. Our plans are all about creating value for you, our shareholders, by meeting society's needs. Of course, these needs change and evolve. In late 1800s, we were largely a kerosene company that's what our customers needed. Then Thomas Edison invented light bulb and Henry Ford mass produced cars. The market for one product closed and a new one opened. This is the nature of our business. We've always adapted to Society's changing needs and evolving technologies.
Across more than 135 years, we've evolved and transformed from a maker of lamp fuel to a maker of motor fuel; from supplying the Wright Brothers first airplane to supplying the space shuttle; from relying on rubber from trees to developing butyl rubber to support the war effort; from turning natural gas, once a byproduct of oil into a cleaner fuel for electricity; from not only refining hydrocarbons, but also reforming them into chemical products, like high efficiency plastics; from filling tanks with gasoline to potentially filling them with bio-fuels made from algae. Society's needs evolve and so do we.
We have a very long history of consistently rising to and meeting the challenges of a dynamic world. Today, many in Society are looking for solutions that address the risk of climate change. At last year's Annual Meeting, a majority of you asked that we provide more information on the implications for our Company, and how we manage the risk. We listened. In this year's Energy and Carbon Summary, we went in further in sharing our insights. Insights gain through operating one of the largest and most successful energy companies in the world, and as a company committed to a sustained research and development effort.
Society has aspirations for economic growth, reliable and affordable energy and environmental protection. We see our role as helping close the gap between what people want and what can be responsibly done. This is what I believe sustainability is all about and frankly, is what we’re all about. Sharing ideas and solving challenges with smart, dedicated people across this Company is what I have come to enjoy most about this job. I'm thankful for the opportunity to do it, and I look forward to sharing some of our ideas with you today.
Let me turn now to our view of the future of energy, beginning with a look at society's demand for our products. As I mentioned that's where we start, energy is critical to human development. So it's no surprise the market for oil and gas and natural gas is enormous. If you want to grow and prosper, you need access to reliable and affordable energy. I've seen the positive impact access that energy can have. Growing up, I moved all around the world and spent time in a number of developing countries, and I saw firsthand the difference energy can make in improving everyday life. I'm extremely proud of the role our industry is playing in raising living standards all around the world.
To better understand the global market for energy and our Company's role, and you have to break it down by sector, not all energy demand is the same nor are energy supplies. Different sources meet different needs. There are four primary demand sectors; transportation, electricity generation, industrial, and residential and commercial. Each sector's energy needs are different. The transportation sector, for example, requires energy dense portable fuels, especially for heavy duty vehicles. That typically means liquids like diesel. At the same time, each sector also has a different emissions profile. As an example, the industrial sector has higher worldwide emissions than transportation or residential.
As technology, societal demands and energy sources evolve, so does the mix and the amount of different energy supplies. Experts agree that all economic solutions include a prominent role for oil and natural gas. In 2040, oil and natural gas will likely meet about 55% of the world's energy needs, equivalent to about 200 million barrels a day, that's up from about 160 million today. Other sources, except coal, will grow too, especially renewables. This outlook is based on assumed advances in the technologies currently available. However, advances in technology could be dramatically different. Technology is truly the X factor.
The history of our industry shows how technology can radically change the game and create real value. Public policy is another critical factor. When developing our outlook, we assume that public policy will evolve. In fact, we had anticipated and incorporated impacts of the commitments that eventually emerge from the Paris Agreement, an agreement that we've always supported. The Paris Agreement is a sound means to encourage a global approach to a global challenge. It commits both developed and developing countries to reducing emissions, and making progress towards achieving a two degree outcome.
In developing the energy and carbon summary report, we look at a wide range of two degree scenarios through 2040, developed by experts at a Stanford Modeling Forum. Oil and natural gas continues to play huge role in all of them. This analysis also confirms that more technology is needed, and that’s our research and development is focusing on solutions to provide energy and cut emissions. In the electricity generation and industrial sectors, carbon capture and storage is one of our major focus areas. It’s a scalable solution, and will be critical to achieving a two degree scenario.
At this meeting last year, we updated you on our carbon capture research. Since then, we’ve made even more progress with our partner, FuelCell Energy. Next generation bio-fuel is another technology we’re taking a lead on. I mentioned earlier that the transportation sector typically acquires energy dense and liquid fuels. It also accounts for significant emissions. New bio-fuels could address both of these issues. We’re making exciting progress with our partners at Synthetic Genomics, and the multi-million dollar program that uses algae as the energy source.
This past year, we announced a breakthrough that resulted in modified algae that more than doubles its oil content. It achieves this without significantly slowing growth, which is a key challenge along the path to commercial scalability. In earlier this year, we entered a new phase of our research, growing algae in outdoor ponds. This could lead to the ability to produce 10,000 barrels per day by 2025.
In the industrial sector, we’re looking at ways to reduce heating and cooling, and therefore, energy and emissions for a range of processes. This sector needs more attention than is currently getting. One example of our work in this area is a project with Georgia Tech that could significantly reduce the amount emissions associated with manufacturing plastics. It uses a molecular filter to separate chemical building blocks for polyester and plastics. Results of the research were published a peer reviewed general, Science.
We’re also improving our own operations by becoming more energy efficient. This not only saves money, it cuts emissions. Since 2000, we’ve improved energy efficiency in our refining operations by 10%. And since 2013, we’ve used technology to reduce emissions intensity in our chemical business by 7%. Earlier this month, we announced other critical initiatives to cut greenhouse gas emissions. By 2020, we’re targeting 15% reduction in methane emissions with a focus on our unconventional operations. Technologies, especially methane leak detection systems, play important role in this. We’re also targeting 25% reduction in flaring. These efforts are the latest in our ongoing drive to develop lower emissions energy solutions. Since 2000, we spent more than $9 billion in this area. It’s good for the environment, it’s good for our business, and remains a priority.
We turn now to our investment strategy. Oil and natural gas are consumable energy sources, reservoirs don’t refill. So without investment, we cannot meet demand. We have to continually invest in developing new fields to maintain let alone growth available supplies. For this reason, meeting the world’s growing energy need will require trillions of dollars in new investments, even in a two degree scenario. We’re doing our part to meet this challenge and grow our business. Our current plan increased our earnings potential by 135% by 2025, assuming an oil price of $60 per barrel.
Our strategy is focused on making advantaged investments. When we say advantage, we mean those projects that enable us to maximize the value of our technologies, our integrated businesses, and our people. This maximizes the return for you. Many of our advantaged investments are in the upstream, projects in the Permian, Papua New Guinea, Mozambique and Guyana, to name just a few. They are also in our downstream and chemical businesses, such as our new manufacturing operations in Texas and in Singapore.
Our investment plans, like every aspect of our business, are built on the fundamentals. We focused on success factors that are true regardless of market conditions, and we leverage areas where we have unique competitive strengths; the first fundamental is operational excellence, doing the right things, the right way, time-after-time; safety performance is one measure of this; keeping people who work in our facilities safe is our first priority; the systems and the disciplined approach required to consistently do this result in well run operations. I am very proud that we are an industry leader in safety.
Project execution is another fundamental. It requires thorough plans, deep experience and hands on management. For mega projects, offshore Eastern Canada, to short cycled frac jobs in West Texas, we are delivering industry leading results. Underlying both of these fundamentals is another, our world class work force. It’s people who make this Company. Behind every successful well, every barrel of crude every new technology, are people. We put a priority on recruiting and retaining the most talented, most creative and most dedicated in the business.
Integration and technology are two other fundamentals, which distinguish us from others in the industry. Let me discuss the importance of each. Producing energy and products from oil and natural gas requires a chain of very distinct operations, connected by a complex infrastructure. Our Permian to Gulf Coast investments are a great example of this. We work the entire value chain from producing oil and gas at our rig sites, moving the resources through miles of pipeline to our refineries and chemical plants where we then create the products our customers demand. Because we fully integrate our operations, we capture value along the chain that others simply can’t, maximizing value at every link. Our whole is more valuable to you than some of our parts.
Technology is another fundamental where we have a significant competitive advantage. The energy landscape has gone through dramatic changes over the years, primarily driven by advances in technology. Our sustained investment in R&D unmatched in our industry, often enable us to lead these changes and to capitalize on them. So now let me briefly describe how we apply these fundamentals in each of our three business lines. As I said earlier, we’ve developed the richest portfolio of investment opportunities since the merger. Our potential for earnings growth is strong and robust, even when prices are low. No one in our industry can match our opportunity set today.
In the upstream, you've heard about our exploration success and Guyana, one of the industry's biggest discoveries over the past three years. You've heard about our big acquisition in the Permian Basin. We've also gained access to world class LNG opportunities in Papua New Guinea and Mozambique. And we recently won blocks with tremendous promise in Brazil where we now have more offshore acreage than any other international company. It is a rich and diverse portfolio, and they are very good investments. And, they’re responsive to global demand for more energy and global expectations for fewer emissions.
Our LNG projects, in particular are key, enabling cleaner natural gas to replace coal for electricity generation. These upstream investments play to our strengths. Many are big projects, which take advantage of our capabilities and project execution and operational excellence. We’re able to create additional value by linking many of them to our refining and chemical assets. And we’re able to apply suite of industry leading technologies. Examples include advanced seismology, integrated reservoir modeling and data analytics.
These innovative tools enable us to identify and develop the best opportunities and maximize the value we create for you. Our turnaround time from discovery to production is one of the best in the business. All of these projects we’ll be producing by 2025. At that time, they will make up half of our upstream earnings again assuming oil price for $60. And they will also represent a threefold increase in our upstream earnings potential.
Let me turn now to the downstream. Here the name of the game is upgrading, shifting the product slate from lower value fuel oils to higher value refined fuels, lubricants and chemicals. It's a margin business. And you increase your profit by squeezing value out of every molecule. We do that by leveraging our proprietary technology, technology that we developed that isn’t available to our competitors, giving us a competitive advantage. Our new world-class hydrocracker at Rotterdam and technology investments at Singapore provides an industry unique capability to produce higher value products. Strong brands such as Mobil 1 and market access, especially in Asia Pacific, also provide key advantages. By 2025, our downstream earnings potential will double.
Finally, let me update you on our chemical business. No other major integrated oil and gas company has a chemical business that compares with ours. Our competition are the pure chemical companies that do nothing else, and even here we’re in the top tier. The chemical business strategy is both growing capacity and upgrading to higher value products. High performance plastics are increasingly a part of modern life, from preserving food to making cars lighter, which helps reduce emissions.
As economies grow and the middle class expands demand for chemical products go up. We develop new technology, like innovative catalyst, to turn hydrocarbons into high performance chemicals. Some of these products are changing the world like plastic films that are extending the life of food so millions more can eat. Integration add significant value here as well, from advantage feed and shared facilities with refineries to leveraging upstream project expertise, to the Permian to Gulf Coast network, I referred to earlier. And we have great access to booming markets around the world, like the downstream, our chemical earnings potential, will double by 2025.
Investments we're making to grow each of our businesses all aim to do one thing, maximize value, for you our shareholders and for society. We have a long history of doing this. For a capital-intensive business like ours, a critical measure of this value is return on capital employed where we have consistently led industry. Our investment plans will further strengthen our leadership position. At current prices, we expect to more than double our earnings potential, while growing our returns.
As I indicated, this growth is shared among all of our business lines. Everyone is contributing to the bottom-line. And since our projects are uniquely advantaged, they are robust to a low price environment. Not many other companies can say this with confidence. We're committed to sharing the success with you, our shareholders, through reliable growing dividend. For generations, we've been a leader in dividend growth, which we maintained again this year when we increased the dividend by 6.5%. It was our 36th consecutive annual increase.
The higher earnings and cash flow from our investment plans underpin our ability to continue this trend. I mean in my comments where I started, it's the mission of this company to create shareholder value by creating societal value. Increasingly, our customers, partners and stakeholders, demand more energy and fewer environmental impacts, including emissions. Our job is to help close the gap between what society wants and what is economically available, using advantaged investments and promising technology. As society's need continue to evolve, we'll continue to respond. That's what this company and our people are committed to doing. That's our purpose and we have a plan to fulfill it. I want to thank you again for the confidence you put in our Company.
Let me turn now to the formal business of the meeting. We have seven proposals to consider, including the election of directors. The proposal will be presented in the order they appear in the proxy statement. The polls are now open. If you wish to change your proxy instructions on any of the proposals, or if you have not submitted a proxy and wish to vote by ballot, they are available from the ushers. Please raise your hand if you would like a ballot any time during the formal business. They'll be collected after all items have been introduced.
The first proposal is the election of 10 directors. I nominate the 10 people identified in the proxy statement. All 10 are highly qualified to serve on the Board. All of our nominees are currently serving as Exxon Mobil directors. I'd now like to ask each of our nominees, seated to my right, to stand as their names are called; Susan Avery, Angela Braly, Ursula Burns, Kenneth Frazier, Steven Kandarian, Douglas Oberhelman, Samuel Palmisano, Steve Reinemund, William Weldon. Thank you.
I like to also take this opportunity to recognize one of our directors, who is retiring and not standing for reelection, Dr. Michael Boskin, who has served on our Board for 22 years. Michael, thank you. I know I speak for the entire Board, Mike I want to say, we’re going to miss having you and your wise council and board room. Thanks for many years of dedicated service.
The next time on the agenda is the ratification of PricewaterhouseCoopers as the independent auditor. The Board’s Audit Committee has appointed PWC to audit Exxon Mobil’s financial statements for 2018. We are asking shareholders to ratify that appointment. PWC is represented today by Mr. Tom Smith. Tom, would you please stand? Thank you. The Audit Committee’s reasons for recommending PWC appear in the proxy statement. I move to adopt this proposal.
The next four proposal calls for a shareholder advisory vote to approve executive compensation. The Board recommends a vote in favor in this proposal. The next order of business is the consideration of shareholder proposals. And before we begin, I’d like to say that these proposals do not represent the full scope of shareholder suggestions or discussions. Last year, for example, we engage with shareholders, holding about 30% of our total shares outstanding and nearly 50% of institutional shareholdings. In a number of instances, we adopted shareholder suggestions. An example of this is the Board diversity matrix. It’s important to also note that for most proposals we receive, we agree with the underlying principals and stated objectives. We typically only just agree on the best means of achieving these objectives.
With that, let me turn to the four proposals. For those following along, details can be found in the proxy statement. And the first shareholder proposal calls for an Independent Chairman. I understand that [Michelle Foder Taylor] will present the proposal.
Unidentified Company Representative
Good morning members of the Board and fellow shareholders. My name is [Michelle Foder Taylor], and I present the proposal filed by [Kessler Foundation of Maine] and co-filed by the State of Vermont Pension Fund, requested a separation of positions of Chair and CEO. This resolution has been before shareholders for the last several years. The resolution is not a criticism of our new CEO of Exxon Mobil, it is a request for what we consider best governance practice, and proposes the policy of the separate independent share be faced in when a new CEO is next shows in the future. We believe an independent Chair and Board can improve the Company focus and governance matters, strengthen accountability to shareholders and in the best interest of our Company. It is widely recognized that Chair and the Board is a very time and sensitive job. And separate chair also frees time for our new CEO to focus on running the Company and building effective business strategies.
There is a great quote from Intel’s former chairman worth repeating. Is a company of sandbox for the CEO or is the CEO an employee. If he is an employee, he needs a boss, and that boss is the Board. The chairman runs the Board so he can -- so how can he be the CEO for himself. Every United Kingdom company has this policy and hundreds of U.S. companies do as well. By 2017, Boards at 36% of S&P 1500 companies has an independent chair and 55% has separate chair and CEO. There is a strong growing investor support for this reform. This resolution was filed at several dozen companies last year, receiving a 39% vote at Exxon Mobil.
Exxon Mobil current position is that the proposal would unusually reduce the flexibility of the Board to elect leadership structure that separate roles should not be managed and that the Board is not related to this model of continued CEO and Chair. We understand that the Board wishes the flexibility to choose either a combined or separate Chair, but tradition has great power. At present, we fare that whatever a new CEO is chosen that the Board will continue this tradition of combined growth.
In fact, as far as we know, the Board has no guidelines to help it assess what are the pros and cons of the separate Chair or combined Chair. We would urge a set of guidelines be prepared to help with this assessment. This is a crucial time for companies to demonstrate that the Board has full oversight of management on issues like compensation that is not comprised if the CEO is the first among equal on the Board. Thank you.
Thank you, [Michelle]. In response to proposal, let me share with you the Board’s perspective. We agree with the importance of the strong and independent Board. It needed to be dedicated to representing the interest of shareholders and providing oversight of company management, including the CEO. And I can assure you, our Board does this. A combined chair and CEO position does not undermine this objective. That’s where we disagree with the proponents of this proposal.
It’s important to note that nine of our 10 directors are independent, including the presiding director. The Board believes that independent Board leadership is effectively provided by the presiding director. Also, the Board Affairs Committee, Public Issues and Contributions Committee, Audit Committee and of course, the Compensation Committee are all chaired by independent directors.
We believe the Board should retain flexibility to determine the leadership structure that best serves the interest of shareholders. Therefore, the Board recommends shareholders’ vote against this proposal. The shareholder proposal calls for special shareholder meetings. I understand that Frank Rauscher will present the proposal. Frank?
Mr. Chairman, Board, employees and shareholders, my name is Frank Rauscher, I represent Kenneth Steiner resolved. Shareholders ask the Board of Directors to take the steps necessary within the bylaws and appropriate Company documents to give the owners 10% of the outstanding common stock the power to call a special shareholder meeting without the cumbersome need to potential to judge. Special meetings of our shareholders to vote on important matters such as electing new directors that can arise between the meetings. The proposal topic won more than 70% support at average Lifesciences in SunEdison in 2013.
A shareholder’s right to call special meeting without the cumbersome need to potentially to judge and act by written consent are two complimentary ways to bring important matter to the attention of both management and shareholders outside the Annual Meeting cycle, such as the election of directors. As far as the Fortune 500 companies provide for shareholders to call special meetings without the cumbersome need to potential to judge and act by written consent. This proposal topic won 40% of support at the 2017 annual Exxon meeting. This 40% support could have been higher for instance Exxon 45% and small shareholders have the same access to independent corporate governance information as our shareholders. Please vote yes. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Thank you, Frank. We agree that shareholders should have a meaningful right to call a special meeting. This right is already provided for in New Jersey where we’re incorporated. Current law allows shareholders holding 10% of our Company's outstanding stock to call special meetings with a showing of good cause. We believe that requirement to show good cause is prudent. It demonstrates legitimate purpose and protects against abuse. It's worth noting that the Board has done nothing to restrict this right. Therefore, the Board recommends shareholders vote against this proposal. The next shareholder proposal asked that a Board diversity matrix being included in the proxy statement. I understand that [Michelle Taylor] will present this proposal as well. Michelle?
Unidentified Company Representative
Good morning once again. I'm from New York City Comptroller, Scott Stringer, and I'm here to present proposal on behalf of New York City Pension Funds. New York City Pension Funds have $194 billion in assets, and are substantial long-term Exxon shareholders, with current holdings of about 9.2 million shares. Item 6 calls for disclosure of the Board matrix that includes each director’s gender, race, ethnicity, as all of your skills, experience and attributes that are most relevant in light of the Company's business long-term, strategy and risk.
A diverse Board, in terms of relevant skills, experience, gender and race ethnicity, is a good indicator of a well functioning Board. The need for Exxon to have a diverse climate competent Board is especially important, given the long-term strategic challenges it face in order to transition successfully to a low carbon future. Exxon directors maybe highly accomplished, but it's difficult for shareholders to assess whether they are the right directors individually and collectively to oversee Exxon on our behalf.
The bar chart in the proxy statement that lists aggregate directors’ attributes tell investors nothing about ability of individual directors nor are the specific attributes well supported by the directors’ bio, the proposal matrix with active shareholders a big picture view of the directors’ attributes and how they fit together. Our office has had productive discussions with management and directors at dozens of companies. By contrast, all five of our requests to engage directly with an independent Exxon director went unanswered. As a result, Exxon Board is today an outlier in the opposition to disclosure of a municipal board matrix. Exxon peers such as Chevron, Accidental Petroleum and IBM disclose Board petitions. Other companies providing first time disclosure this year include Pepsico, Exelon, Wells Fargo, Colgate-Palmolive, Honeywell International and Duke Energy, among others. I urge a vote for item number six. Thank you.
Thank you, Michelle, appreciate your perspective on that. We agree that diversity of experience, background, gender and ethnicity is critical to Board competence. Our Board benefits from varying perspectives that diversity brings. However, we do not agree to the prescribed format for characterizing our Board's diversity is required. Instead, we provide detailed and specific information easily located in the proxy statement in our Web site for each individual director. We've also provided an overview of the collective competencies and the diversity of the entire Board. The Board therefore recommend shareholders vote against this proposal.
The last shareholder proposal calls for a report on lobbying. I understand that Richard Brooks will present the proposal.
Mr. Chairman, Board, fellow shareholders, my name's Ricky Brooks, I'm 19 year employed ExxonMobil at the Baytown refinery. On behalf of United Steelworkers and 25 co-filers, I hereby move item 7, shareholders proposal about lobbying. Corporations spend millions of dollars with trader's associations that lobby indirectly on their behalf and with tax-exempt organizations that draft and endorse model state legislations, such as the American Legislative Exchange Council. As a shareholder, we currently have no idea how much is being spent on lobbying by our Company. But we know AT&T spent $600,000 of company funds to hire personal attorney to the President of the United States. For five years, AT&T has had similar shareholder resolutions regarding lobbying.
ALEC’s positions on workers' rights, health and safety on the job, are particularly troublesome to us. We see their impact in how our Company is unilaterally implementing complex and confusing safety changes in Baytown. For decades, these safety practices have been mutually agreed upon to ensure workers' health and safety. Company is also seeking to tear down and rollback contracts, provisions and arbitration awards to achieve its goal over regional or global permitting system. Shareholders should be concerned that core health and safety procedures seem to be systematically weakened by our Company.
Our Company's argument against item seven states that shareholders can use government Web sites to get this information. Filers of this proposal have engaged numerous experienced researchers and Ivy League students in an attempt to test this argument, and we can assure you that if government Web sites exist, it is not easy to find. In January, our Company told proponents it would offer a tutorial on where to locate the data. But unsurprisingly, the tutorial has failed to occur. We urge shareholders to vote for this proposal to mandate our Company supply the necessary report. Our reputation could be at stake.
Finally, I like to show support of the Exxon Mobil Council of several Australian unions that are waging a worldwide campaign to protest Exxon Mobil support of unfair labor practices at its Australian operations. Company’s Australian subsidiary, Esso, is supporting in its maintenance contractor UGL and slashing maintenance workers’ wages up to 30%, cutting benefits for 200 maintenance contractors and opposing a work schedule for offshore workers that will take them away from their families for longer periods of time. It is time for the dispute to come to a fair and risible end. Thank you.
Thank you, Ricky. Let me thank you too for your years of service at Baytown. You had quite a few things in that talk there. Let me just address the couple of them before I get to the proposal. I think on the safety front, we find Baytown is probably one of the safest -- I know, it’s one of the safest refineries we have in circuit, and one of the safest actually in the whole world. So I think great progress that we’re making in safety. And on the Australia incident, I understand the contractors and the union there are continuing to have discussions, which I continue fully encourage. I think ongoing dialog is important to resolving all these issues there.
On the proposal itself, the Board fully supports accountability. We support appropriate transparency and the disclosure of lobbying activities and our expenditures. And we believe our compliance with existing federal and state disclosure requirements achieve this objective. Exxon Mobil complies not only with the letter, but also with the spirit of all federal and state requirements. These requirements have been in place for many years and are comprehensive. We publicly report our federal lobbying expenses to Congress on a quarterly basis. In addition, we outline the specific issues that are lobbied. So to summarize, the Board believes the Company’s existing disclosures are appropriate and therefore recommend you vote against this proposal.
Now, all lines of business have now been introduced. If any of you have proxy cards, please hand them to the ushers at this time. Those who have already returned their proxy cards and need not vote by ballot, unless they wish to change your votes. If you’d like to change your vote, simply mark the appropriate sections in the ballot. The ballots will be collected and turned over to inspector of election to be counted. If you wish your ballot to be kept secret, the usher will provide you with an envelope.
The appointed proxies in attendants today hereby cast all votes that we have been authorized to cast in accordance with the instructions indicated on the individual proxy cards. If you have proxies, please pass those to the ushers in the aisle. Since proxies and ballots have been collected, I now declare the polls closed. Since you’ve all been sitting for a while, I invite you, if you’d like to stand and stretch for a minute. For those wishing to address the meeting in the discussion period, this would be a good time to move towards those reserved seats in the aisles. Let’s take a short break.
I can tell from the chatter that was a much needed break. So I'm glad to get a chance to scratch and talk to a few folks around. So we’ll start now with some questions. I'm going to hand it over to Jeff, and let him orchestrate the Q&A session.
First, the inspector of election is ready to report the preliminary vote. May we have your report please?
Mr. Chairman and Mr. Secretary, at least 3.6 billion shares of stock of the corporation have been voted on the seven items of business discussed at today's meeting. Voting results are expressed as a percentage of total votes cast. According to New Jersey corporate law, abstentions are not votes count.
Subject to final tabulation of votes, which should not materially change the results, I report that on average 97.6% of the votes cast were voted to elect as directors the 10 nominees enlisted in the proxy statement. On the resolution concerning the ratification of independent auditors, approximately 97.3% of the shares voting thereon were voted for and 2.7% voted against. On the resolution concerning an advisory vote to approve executive compensation, approximately 72.9% of the shares voting thereon were voted for and 27.1% were voted against.
On the resolution concerning an independent Chairman, approximately 38.7% of the shares of voting thereon were voted for and 61% were voted against. On the resolution concerning special shareholders meeting, approximately 36% of the shares voting thereon were voted for and 64% were voted against. On the resolution concerning a board diversity matrix, approximately 16.5% of the shares voting thereon were voted for and 83.5% were voted against. On the resolution concerning our report on lobbying, approximately 26.3% of the shares voting thereon were voted and 73.7% were voted against. My written reports will be submitted to the secretary as soon as they are completed.
Thank you, Paula. The written report of inspector of election will be filed with the minutes of the meeting. The final votes on each of these matters will also be available on Exxon Mobil Web site and filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Let me just say that we respect our shareholders’ input and we’ll consider all the feedback we received regardless of whether the resolution received a majority of the votes cast. This concludes the formal business of today's meeting. I hand it over to Jeff now to moderate our Q&A session, and open the floor to any questions regarding Exxon Mobil's business, Jeff.
A - Jeff Woodbury
As previously indicated, if you want to speak, remain seated and raise your speaker identification card to indicate that you want to address the meeting. When recognized, give your completed speaker card to the usher. Please stand and begin by stating your name. You may speak for up to two minutes, while the usher holds the microphone. Please make your comments as brief as possible, so we can accommodate as many speakers as time allows. We will continue to use the lighting system to help you manage your time. First priority will be given to those who have not yet had the opportunity to speak. We welcome your questions and comments at this time. So we will start in the back left with gentlemen in the grey suit and the white shirt with the sunglasses.
Hello. My question relates to the recent dividend increase to $0.82 per share. I would like to understand why the Board decided to do what seems like a large increase, given the current commodity price environment? Thank you.
Thank you for the question. I have to say it's the first time I've been asked about the dividend being too large. So I appreciate the balance in that question. I would tell you every quarter the Board looks at the dividend. We think about that. We recognize the responsibility that we have to our shareholders to provide a reliable and growing dividend. And we think about it in the context of the capability and capability of the business, the yield that we’re getting on the shares, so number of factors that go into.
Our most recent decision, I would tell you and the strength of that dividend increase, reflects the plan that I talked about today and shared with you. The opportunity set that we have available to us and that we’re actively prosecuting the growth that that opportunity sets from a earnings standpoint is going to result in, which will underpin and support the dividend capacity of the corporation.
So we try to obviously the commodity cycles play a role in that, but we’re also very focused on underlying fundamentals of the business and the strength of that. In this most recent dividend after coming out of a very low commodity cycle, where we kept dividends fairly low was an opportunity to catch a bit on that and reflect the growth opportunity that we see going forward. Thank you for that question.
Gentlemen over on the far right sitting down with the dark suit, please.
Thank you, Mr. Woodbury. Mr. Wood, my name is Hunter Martin from Houston. My wife and I’ve been attending these meeting for 25 years and we’re grateful for a service that you and all the others have rendered, and especially the 30 years consecutive dividend increases. But for those of us who have owned shares in Exxon. From your early school days, Mr. Woods, remember when debt was a word foreign to Exxon. We’ve been worried in the fact that we were considered darlings of investors. And we realize that the market share of our stock has traded water for a decade or more. You’ve been dealt most difficult hand. Wall Street is virtually negative about today’s performance, and it’s embarrassing to me, who love this company. I do not mean to be impolite or cranky, Brian, to you or the Board. But in the words of Mr. Wonderful on Shark Tank, how do we make money?
Well, thank you for the question and the years that you’ve come to the meeting and your support of our shares. And I will tell you I don’t find your comments out of order or cranky. I think they’re perfectly legitimate and this is one of the questions that this forum should try to address. In fact, we have tried through the presentation to give you a perspective of how we see the opportunity in front of the Company to grow value. Because you think about what ultimately is going to drive shareholder price is going to be shareholder is going to be company earnings.
And so the focus of the team, and I can assure you the management committee and myself, been very focus on working hard to make sure that we’re leveraging every competitive advantage that we’ve got in the Company to grow shareholder value and grow earnings. And the plan that we’ve laid out today, the high level review that I gave you, I think does that. In fact, if you look at the planned growth out to 2025, we talked about it for each of the sectors, tripling or doubling depending on where the price environment is. And if the price environment is lower than what we’ve assumed, we’re still going to grow earnings.
Even in the low price environment, the plans that we put together grow earnings by 135%, 135% where were in 2017. So I think even in low price environment, our investments are going to generate earnings and growth. So I would tell you we’re very focused on that. I think the plans demonstrate our focus on that and we’re doing it across each of the businesses. So I hope to find as the years come -- go forward that your visits here -- you're happier with the stock price, because I can tell you that’s what we’re focused and working on. Thank you for the question.
Let’s go back to the left side. The gentleman in the suit behind Ms. [Foder Taylor] please.
Thank you. I am Julian Martinez and I represent SER-Jobs for Progress National. SER National is a non-profit organization assisting over 1.3 million individuals a year with the employment and educational needs. We would like to note that ExxonMobil has been very instrumental in providing educational resources like STEM and STEAM to Hispanic students, and would like to thank you for that support and for all the other communities support you provide. However, we would like to note that ExxonMobil has no Hispanic representation on their Board of Directors or their senior management team. We urge you to rectify this shortcoming. We would also like you to consider participating in Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility's Corporate Inclusion Index. The purpose of the index is to help businesses become more knowledgeable about their engagement with the Latino community. The American dream is alive and well. Hispanics born in this country are more highly educated and are in higher incomes than their immigrant parents. The Latino population grew 57% between the year 2000 and 2014, and accounted for over 43.4% of the job growth between 2009 and 2013. U.S. Latino purchasing power is $1.5 trillion, which makes U.S. Latinos the world’s 14th largest economy. We hope that Exxon Mobil has a vision to incorporate these changes. Thank you.
Thank you. Thanks for the comments. I will assure you that promoting the diversity of our work force making sure that that diversity is reflected at all levels in the Company is a focus area and a priority for me and the rest of the management team. And not just at Dallas at the corporate level but as you go through our corporation, I would tell you that all of our managers are focused on making sure that our broader population -- everybody has a right and a potential to advance and to realize their full potential. And so our objective is making sure that happens.
We feel a lot of structure into helping ensure that that happens, and ensuring it through our businesses to make sure that we’re looking for opportunities to improve, identifying areas where we don’t like what we’re seeing and addressing those. And I think over the years, we’ve seen great progress with the diversity of our work force. We’ve got a longer ways to go. But I’d tell you, the way we look at it this starts when you hire and your hiring class, and then as that class advances through the organization. And so we track the diversity and the groups from the day they come in the door as they advance and make sure that they are advancing at the same rate and at the same pace, and getting the same opportunities as everyone in the Company.
And so I think as time has gone on, we've seen that continue to grow and to impact the whole of the business. So I'm confident that over the years you’ll continue to see growing diversity in the corporation, reflecting the diversity of the population that is available to us to come into the company, which are tend to be engineering and technical degrees. So I think I take your point, I think it's important one. But I'll also tell you we’re very focused on developing and driving. Thank you.
We go back to the right to the lady in the white dress, glasses, please.
I am Nancy Keen. And my question is about the concern of the oil industry and Exxon Mobil regarding the cyber security, and the protection of our domestic infrastructure assets, particularly in the refinery area production and pipeline.
Thank you. That's a really important topic and one that is evolving every day, it’s a big challenge. I think any company go to any industry, or any CEO you talk to certainly in the circles that I travel in recognize the threat and the risk and the concern associated with cyber security. I think the good news is that our corporation has recognized that threat from very early on, and has built a layered approach to defense to mitigate that risk and that exposure. And it starts with the structure, the architecture of our systems, where we have made sure that we separate the critical process control computing systems for our plants and operations from the broader Internet systems that are out there. So that we limit the ability for attacks to penetrate into our process and operating computing systems, and we've been very successful with that.
We've also have a very substantial program of continuing to upgrade and putting new systems check for viruses, continually working to harden our systems. As an example, we don't allow any of our employees to use USB ports, because one of the common things out in industry for viruses to get into computers is through these USBs, somebody finds USB and plugs it into computer. And so as a way to mitigate that, we've shut that off for majority of our computers, so people aren't allowed to stick USBs in, which has reduced it. We don’t allow people to use personal email on our computing systems, because we found a lot of the personal accounts find their way into our computing systems, so we've eliminated that. So we've taken a lot of steps to try to protect our systems.
The other thing that we do which in talking to my peers around the different industries were fairly unique, and as we test our employees very routinely and with mock attacks to see how they respond and we track that. And we're able to know how every individual has responded to that attack, and it gives us an opportunity to engage in conversations and help train and make people more sensitive. So I would think today when we have our test out there the test with our employee base, we have the lowest failure rate, probably than anybody in the industry -- any industry in the U.S.
When I talked to Michael Dale or I talk to other industry execs, and talk about what we're doing and the failure rate that we’re seeing, he said they’re unheard of level. So I feel good that we have been focused on this and we’re working it the right way. On the other hand, this is a continually evolving threat and one that we have to stay on top of. And so we’re always racing to make sure that we’re staying one step ahead of the threat out there. And so I think it will be a challenge that we will be facing and continue to work for as long as I can see going into the future.
But I feel confident that the tools available to us today we're drawing on the best that's out there, and we've got a very qualified group of people helping us manage that. And we've got our work force very attuned to that threat and trying to help us manage that. So I think I feel pretty good about where we're at but I wouldn't tell you that I'm comfortable. Thank you.
Okay. Going back to the right, gentleman in the blue shirt.
My name is [Glenn Samson]. I was an employee for 35 years. I’ve been a shareholder for almost 50 years. My question has to do with what steps, if any or studies if any, the Company is making to be able to continue to operate in the event of electromagnetic pulse an EMP attack on the United States. As you probably know, North Korea has threatened that. Iran has threatened that. And there is an EMP commission, which estimates that at cost of only $3 billion, we could harden all of the electric grids in the nation, no one is involved is trying to spend the money. So my question is, is Exxon looking at that in terms of our own assets? Are we doing any talking with the electric companies with the government, because the estimate is that if there were an EMP attack over the center of the United States that approximately 60% of us would be dead within a year. Thank you.
Well, thanks for your years of service, and your coming to the meeting. Let me -- rather than talk s specifically about that threat, I'll maybe just talk more broadly about how we manage risk. And I would tell you, it starts with making sure we have a very broad aperture to the risk that the Company is exposed to, including risks like the one that you're referring to.
And we have relationships and engagements with variety of government agencies think tanks, to make sure that the understanding of the threat scenarios that are out there are understood. And we put that that risk exposure we lay that across the portfolio of the businesses that we run, a portfolio of the operations that we have. And we have a process for each of the business managers who have responsibility for those facilities and businesses that are exposed to those risks to go through and quantify what the impact of those risks would be on their operations and what the probability of those risks, how that would manifest itself in their operations and then what steps they can take to; one, mitigate that exposure; and two, respond if that risk was to manifest itself and impact the operations, how would we respond to that.
And so a very detailed process, a very comprehensive process across all of our businesses, making sure that every aspect of the risk that our business face is thought through, understood, explicitly characterized and then clear explicit response plans in place to make sure that we're prepared for those. And that's a process that we continue to update on a regular basis, because as you know the threat environment evolves with time. So making sure that our facilities and operations stay on top of that and evolve with those threats is a pretty important aspect of that program. But at the end of the day, we're in a risk management business. And so making sure that we have a good system in place to manage those risks is exactly what we're doing. Your question falls into the heart of that frankly. Thank you.
Okay. On the left side, the gentleman in the suit with the blue shirt, red tie.
Mr. Chairman, my name is Sudarshan Singh. I’m a retiree of Exxon Mobil. My question is regarding whenever we, Exxon Mobil, has the earnings report, the analysts always point out as one of the factors, either we have a flat or a declining production as one of the reasons for stock performance. So my question is with the oil prices hovering around $80 a barrel, what is Exxon Mobil’s plan in Canada and are we planning to increase Canadian operations, so especially considering we have extensive proven reserves, which can help increase the production?
Thank you, that’s a good question. You’re right, it has brought up pretty frequently. Let me start at a more philosophical level, which is we are not managing the business in the upstream, in particular, on a volumes basis. The way we think about our investments in our business is making sure that what we do and the investments that we progress are advantaged and bring value to the bottom line. And so I think everything that we look at has to be robust to a wide range of price environments, and has to generate a superior return to what the average in the industry would be.
And so that requires lining up opportunity sets with our inherent skills and advantages, and that’s a process that we’ve been going through. And from the presentation that I gave, you can see that a number of those have come to maturity around this time and we’ve now built that into our plan. And hence, the comments that I’ve made, that this is the richest set of investment opportunities that we’ve had since the merger. And that’s a function of the work that has been happening in the years past to make sure that we line up the opportunity set with the investments. And then the volumes will fall out of that.
And so I think what you will see in this plan that we’ve laid out through 2025 is a growth and volumes of about 1 million barrels a day from where we’re at today to 2025. So we’ll get to about 5 million barrels a day as we execute these plans. But as I said that’s an outcome, not an objective unto itself. With respect to Canada, and I would tell you more broadly with all of our investment opportunities. Each of the businesses that have responsibility for those opportunities, we have a pretty thorough process of evaluating the robustness of that investment and the profitability of that investment. And then we put the decision about whether or not to advance that in the context of the broader portfolio of opportunities.
So every investment opportunity is fighting for space in terms of demonstrating that it has a robust and profitable return. And so that’s the process that we go through. Canadian opportunities are in the mix with others. And what we tend to do is make sure that we’re selecting the highest value opportunities first and progressing those first. And so that’s the process that we go through every year. That investment portfolio evolves with time. Lots of times because our organization finds way to improve it and bringing in new technology, bringing in improving returns, improving productivity. And so that’s an ongoing process and investments we’ll move around within that portfolio based on how much better the organization can make those returns.
So I would tell you the Canadian investment opportunities are competing in the portfolio, they’re getting their fair hearing and then we’re making the best decision for the whole of the corporation to advance, and you heard some of that today. Thank you.
Okay. I believe we have one more -- time for one more next question. The gentleman on the far left behind Mr. Rosher.
Good morning. My name is [Joe Meyer] from Baton Rouge Louisiana. And I’d like to talk a minute about the safety performance on the Gulf Coast. Several years back, we implemented a program that was, called LPS, in order to come up with a new system of driving down, say the implementation of driving down the number of people getting hurt at the incidents. That has worked but it has one fatal flaw. Let’s pretend safety program penalizes and punishes and disciplines an employee who reports this incident or gets hurt. And so that tends to make the employee not report that incident for fear of getting disciplined. And therefore, it does not accurately reflect the true performance of our safety position. And that is a scary thing for both the corporation and for the employee. I would like to see the Company come up with a better program that would do what it’s intended to do, and help the employee really have a productive employment and a safe employment where we need to something better than what we currently have. Thank you.
Well, thank you for your comments and you happen to hit on a subject that I am pretty familiar with. I’ve been responsible at plant level for using LPS with the work force. I’ve been responsible for implementing LPS at a regional level, and then at a global level and corporately looking at safety across the whole organization. And I would tell you, your experience is very different than the philosophy of that system, and how we’ve implemented it around the world. The intent of LPS is to make sure that people are learning from the incidents in the near misses that we have in our facilities. And it’s by learning by those incidents in near misses that we get better improved.
And therefore, it is the antithesis of what you described, which is to say it encourages people to talk about potential issues and incidents before they turn into somebody getting hurt. And we’ve had great success with that. You can look at the numbers around the world, a lot more near miss reporting, a lot more learnings going on and as a result of that, a lot fewer people being injured. We are at record low levels of injury across our corporation, across all parts of the corporation. And so we’re not perfect. And I would certainly tell you that we are not satisfied with where we’re currently at from a safety standpoint. I would tell you we’re making tremendous progress. We’re on the right path. We’ve got more work to do.
But LPS displays a very important role in that, and I don’t care if you’re talking to the refining manufacturing facilities or the chemical, or our construction project managers and facilities. They all will tell you when we use LPS the right way, you encourage the dialogue, you let people know that you’re bought into their safety, you care for them, you want to have a conversation, it’s not about punishment, it’s about learning and we’ve had great success with that.
So not sure why your experience is different with that broader theme and experience set across the corporation, but I would encourage you to engage in that conversation with your supervisor, because we’ve had great experience across the corporation. And one of these -- just an example of where learning, getting better is directly impacting not only the lives of the people who are in our facilities working, but also all the people associated with, their family, their kids, their mothers, their parents. So it’s a win-win proposition and one that I am very, very proud of quite frankly.
I think we're out of time for questions. So let me thank all of you for your questions and more importantly, for your interest in our business. And before we close, I'd like to share a video with you it highlights our business, our technology, our employees and how they’re helping to meet the world's energy needs while protecting the environment.
Thank you. As we wrap up this year's Annual Meeting, I'd like to briefly summarize some of the key points we covered today. It's the mission of this company, your company, to create value for our shareholders by creating value for society. And we do so by responding to society's changing needs for energy, economic growth and environmental protection. More people around the world are demanding more energy so they can realize higher standards of living. They also want fewer emissions. Our business strategy and four plans will enable us to continue to meet these evolving needs just as we have throughout our history. We're focused on the fundamentals. We're focused on our competitive advantages. We're focused on continuing to create value for all of you.
The Board and I have great confidence in our plans for the future, and we’re grateful for the confidence you’ve placed in us. Thank you for coming today. At this time, I'm going to close the meeting, and I wish all of you safe travels. Thank you.
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