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Home: Friends of the Family Farm: Spotlight: Aera Energy LLC

Aera Energy LLC: "Passionately engaged, collectively empowered"


Formed in 1997 and jointly owned by affiliates of Shell and ExxonMobil, Aera Energy LLC (Aera Energy) specializes in tapping heavy oil, gases and other unconventional light reservoirs. Through the combination of engineering, lean processes, data quality and innovation, Aera Energy remains one of California's largest oil and gas producers, accounting for nearly 25 percent of the state's production.

Located in the heart of the San Joaquin Valley, Aera Energy has active oil fields in Fresno, Kern, Monterey and Ventura counties, and is currently working to permit a historical oil field in northern Santa Barbara County. "Coalinga could easily be considered the birthplace of Shell Oil Company's production activity in the United States," said Feleena Sutton, Public Affairs Representative for the Coalinga operation. "Stretching over 15 square miles in western Fresno County, the Coalinga field produces an average of 7,000 barrels of oil per day from 750 wells." All of the oil produced in these counties stays in California.

When harvesting oil and gas products, Aera Energy is committed to operating responsibly in every aspect of their business. "We call it 'The Aera Way,'" Sutton explained. "Every minute of every day, Aera Energy uses the unique integration of processes, technology and people for developing and producing oil and gas from complex reservoirs under the most stringent regulations in the world."

In fact, on March 16, 2019, Aera Energy's Coalinga production unit celebrated 19 years without any employee safety incidents. Sutton added, "As we like to say, 'every day, everybody goes home to their families,' but what this really means is that our safety is your safety."

In addition to its work culture, Aera Energy and its owners represent nearly 100 years of industry leadership and commitment to California. "One thing that continues to set Aera Energy aside from other oil companies, and many other companies in general, is that our CEO is a woman. On top of that, five out of the nine senior leaders in the company are women as well," continued Sutton. "Aera Energy has a deep and visible commitment to inclusion and diversity."

As part of their community outreach mission, Aera Energy also runs the Aera Ambassador program, which provides hands-on teaching to help people learn about the oil industry.

When asked about California's agriculture industry, Sutton responded, "You might say we provide prosperity - not only does the oil we produce help millions of people travel to work every day, but it also allows businesses to grow and thrive and California-grown food, much of it right here in Fresno County, get to dinner tables every day." Sutton added, "Essentially, our goal is to keep your tractors going, so that in turn, our farmers and ranchers can continue to feed the world."

Aera Energy became a Friends of the Family Farm premium member earlier this year. Sutton explained that one of the company's core values is to build communities. "We do more than just business here in Fresno County - we are active members of the community and seek to improve lives outside our walls. It makes sense to partner with organizations like Fresno County Farm Bureau that are focused on the same thing."

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