Expect some turmoil in the markets from this today.

BP, formerly British Petroleum and now advertising with the slogan "Beyond Petroleum," has a deceptive environmental image. They are still a big oil company, warts and all, but they invest a very small amount in alternative energy. They make solar cells for example. BP's annual revenue is in the hundreds of billions, and profits were $32 billion last year. So their commitment to invest $8 billion over 10 years in alternative energy is a drop in the bucket. That's like if Enron announced that they planned to invest $25 million in apple pie and puppy dogs for little girls. Investing three months' worth of oil profits over ten years? That makes them "Beyond Petroleum?"

Nevertheless, the public falls for it. Ask environmentally conscious consumers, and you'll hear "BP good, Exxon bad."

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