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AAPG, SPE exploring merger to create ‘energy professionals’ organization for the future’

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The American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG) and the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) announced Tuesday that they are exploring the benefits and opportunities of a merger that would create the ‘energy professionals’ organization for the future’.

With unanimous consent from the AAPG Executive Committee and the SPE Board of Directors, a steering committee was created to explore opportunities to form a new combined organization in response to an evolving energy sector and challenging COVID-impacted market environment.

“Our two organizations have worked together side by side for many years on numerous initiatives and global events, notably the Offshore Technology Conference, International Petroleum Technology Conference, Unconventional Resources Technology Conference, and the Petroleum Resources Management System. Joining forces would bring the best of both organizations together and provide additional value to engineers, geoscientists, and the broader energy sector,” said Rick Fritz, AAPG President.

The industry relies on subsurface geoscience and engineering teams rather than siloed disciplines. The new organization would reflect this interdisciplinary approach and open new opportunities for member education, community, and knowledge sharing that are best positioned to be successfully delivered in a new, unified organization.

“Many of our stakeholders have made it clear that they do not have the resources to support as many professional organizations going forward. We believe that as changes in the industry accelerate, the new organization would be the professional community of choice for a generation of professionals and students who are committed to driving long-term change across the energy sector,” according to Tom Blasingame, 2021 SPE President.

In a joint statement, AAPG and SPE said they both recognize that oil and natural gas will continue to be essential to meet the world’s energy needs, and the combined membership will contribute substantially to assuring reliable and affordable future energy supplies. Additionally, the knowledge, skills, and abilities of the new organization will enable its members to accelerate the uptake of new technologies such as digitalization and will also be essential to emerging areas such as carbon capture, utilization, and storage, hydrogen energy, and novel geothermal solutions.

Since the onset of the COVID pandemic, AAPG and SPE said they have both felt the impact of quarantines and social distancing mandates. “Combining resources would put the new organization in a better position to continue offering the services expected by members,” the organisations said. “Synergies would reduce operational overlap and redundancy, thereby increasing efficiency and return on investment for members. Most importantly, it will allow the new organization to look to the future and prepare members for the changes happening in the industry.”

Both organizations feel the timing is right to conduct an in-depth assessment of the potential benefits of moving forward. The steering committee will seek input from each organization’s membership and expects to present recommendations to its respective governing bodies in the next 6-8 months.

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