Tuesday AM November 3rd, 2009
by: Ed Mayberry, November 3, 2009 5:11:00 am
Interviews were filmed with wildcatters and roughnecks, offshore drillers and oil company CEOs about the current state of America's energy crisis. Nicole Torres talked with former Shell Oil CEO John Hoffmeister, for example, as well as leaders of other oil majors, for her documentary "Houston—We Have a Problem."
"I look at oil through their eyes in a very mathematical way, and basically, you know, all the numbers, in a certain way, stack against the oil industry. I mean, no matter what, everybody's gonna say the cheap oil's gone. And that's just the truth, and what's happening now is these alternative fuels, alternative energy, is becoming a really serious player in the energy world, because the numbers are starting to balance."
One oilman told Torres "no one saw India and China coming," and when that happened, everything changed. Torres was surprised to find that a lot of the push for alternatives comes from the oil majors themselves.
"It blew my mind, When I first, that's exactly how I started the story, is I came there to do a puff piece as a California liberal. I met my first oilman and, you know, just had 'oh he's a bad guy' kind of experience. We started talking and he was like 'yes, we need alternatives. Yeah, we fight wars because of oil. What did you think?' And I, I was stunned. I didn't, I didn't think these people thought that way! And that was really the emphasis to do the whole film."
A premier screening for Houston media and energy insiders is set for tomorrow evening. "Houston—We Have a Problem" is part of the United Nations Association Film Festival at the Rice Media Center November 6th through the 8th.
Ed Mayberry, KUHF-Houston Public Radio News.