Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Exxon Mobil Corporation or ExxonMobil , headquartered in Irving, Texas, is an oil producer and distributor formed on November 30, 1999, by the merger of Exxon and Mobil. It is the parent of Exxon, Mobil, and Esso companies around the world. It is one of the top four oil companies in the world (along with Shell, BP, and Total). The current CEO of ExxonMobil is Lee Raymond.
Exxon formally replaced the Esso, Enco, and Humble brands on January 1, 1973 in the USA. The name Esso, which sounds like S-O, attracted protests from other Standard Oil spinoffs because of its similarity to the name of the parent company, Standard Oil. Hence, the company was restricted from using Esso in the USA except in those states awarded to it in the 1911 Standard Oil antitrust settlement.
In order to create a unified brand, the company changed its corporate name from Jersey Standard to Exxon, rebranding all its U.S. stations under the latter title. However, the unrestricted international use of the popular brand Esso prompted the company to continue using Esso outside of the USA. Esso is the only widely used Standard Oil brand left in existence. Other Standard Oil descendants, such as BP and ChevronTexaco, do however maintain a few stations with the Standard Oil brand in specific states in order to retain their trademarks and prevent others from using them.
Both Exxon and Mobil were descendants of the old John D. Rockefeller monopoly, Standard Oil. In 1911, after a United States Supreme Court ruling which upheld a federal court order to dissolve it, the Standard Oil Trust was split into 34 companies. Two of these companies were Jersey Standard, which eventually became Exxon, and Socony ("Standard Oil Company of New York"), which eventually became Mobil.
Over the next decade, both companies grew significantly. Jersey Standard acquired a 50 percent interest in Humble Oil & Refining Co. , a Texas oil producer. Socony purchased a 45 percent interest in Magnolia Petroleum Co., a major refiner, marketer and pipeline transporter. In 1931, Socony merged with Vacuum Oil Co., an industry pioneer dating back to 1866 and a growing Standard Oil spin-off in its own right.
In the Asia-Pacific region, Jersey Standard had oil production and refineries in Indonesia but no marketing network. Socony-Vacuum had Asian marketing outlets supplied remotely from California. In 1933, Jersey Standard and Socony-Vacuum merged their interests in the region into a 50-50 joint venture. Standard-Vacuum Oil Co., or "Stanvac," operated in 50 countries, from East Africa to New Zealand, before it was dissolved in 1962.
Mobil Chemical Company was established in 1960. As of 1999 its principal products included basic olefins and aromatics, ethylene glycol and polyethylene. The company produced synthetic lubricant base stocks as well as lubricant additives, propylene packaging films and catalysts. Exxon Chemical Company became a worldwide organization in 1965 and in 1999 was a major producer and marketer of olefins, aromatics, polyethylene and polypropylene along with specialty lines such as elastomers, plasticizers, solvents, process fluids, oxo alcohols and adhesive resins. The company was an industry leader in metallocene catalyst technology to make unique polymers with improved performance.
In 1955 Socony-Vacuum became Socony Mobil Oil Co. and in 1966 simply Mobil Oil Corp. A decade later, the newly incorporated Mobil Corporation absorbed Mobil Oil as a wholly owned subsidiary. Jersey Standard changed its name to Exxon Corporation in 1972 and established Exxon as a trademark throughout the United States. In other parts of the world, Exxon and its affiliated companies continued to use its Esso trademark.
On March 24 1989, shortly after midnight, the oil tanker Exxon Valdez struck Bligh Reef in Prince William Sound, Alaska, spilling more than 11 million gallons (42,000 m³) of crude oil. The spill was the largest in U.S. history, and in the aftermath of the Exxon Valdez incident U.S. Congress passed the Oil Pollution Act of 1990. At the time of the spill, Exxon paid $300 million immediately and voluntarily to more than 11,000 Alaskans and businesses affected by the Valdez spill. In addition, the company paid $2.2 billion on the cleanup of Prince William Sound, staying with the cleanup from 1989 to 1992, when the State of Alaska and the U.S. Coast Guard declared the cleanup complete. Exxon also has paid $1 billion in settlements with the state and federal governments. Virtually all Valdez compensatory damages were paid in full within one year of the accident, and the trial court commended Exxon for coming forward "with its people and its pocketbook and doing what had to be done under difficult circumstances." However, Exxon has yet to pay up for the largest ruling against it, making no payments on $4.5 billion in punitive damages and perpetually appealing each successive judgment for the past 16 years.
In 1998, Exxon and Mobil signed a US$73.7 billion definitive agreement to merge and form a new company called Exxon Mobil Corporation, the largest company on the planet. After shareholder and regulatory approvals, the merger was completed November 30, 1999 (the deal was announced the next day).
In 2000, ExxonMobil sold a California refinery and 340 Exxon-branded stations to Valero Energy Corporation, as part of a divestiture of California assets. They continue to operate over 700 Mobil branded outlets in the state.
At one time, Mobil's mascot was a flying horse.
Allegations against ExxonMobil
ExxonMobil controls concessions covering 11 million acres (44,500 km²) off the coast of Angola that hold an estimated 7.5 billion barrels (1.2 km³) of crude.  Questions have been raised about ExxonMobil's actions in securing these concessions—Forbes Magazine alleging that "ExxonMobil handed hundreds of millions of dollars to the corrupt regime of President Josť Eduardo dos Santos in the late 1990s". 
In 2003, the Office of Foreign Assets Control reported that ExxonMobil engaged in illegal trade with Sudan and along with dozens of other companies had to settle with the United States government for US$50,000 .
Exxon Mobil is regarded by many environmental activists as an example of disregard for environmental concerns by US-based corporations. The company has been a target for a number of political campaigns, including the Stop Esso campaign, held by Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth and People and Planet, and aimed at boycotting Esso. These organisations commonly parody the company's brandname as "E$$O", an example of alternative political spelling, to indicate their belief that the company is only interested in short-term profit, and is willing to use its financial power to buy influence. Unlike other major oil companies such as Shell Oil and British Petroleum, Exxon is one of the few that has actively fought the Kyoto Protocol and disputed scientific opinion on global climate change.
Greenpeace have been campaigning against ESSO for many years and their main reasons for doing so include their position on the issue of climate change and their funding of the War in Iraq and George Bush's campaigns. They also claim that Esso has flatly refused to believe that the burning of fossil fuels has any negetive affect on the environment or climate change as a whole, despite its being accepted by the scientific community. As soon as Bush was elected, they argue, the USA - the world's biggest polluter (per capita) - withdrew from the Kyoto Protocol, the international measure to cut down on global warming.
ExxonMobil received a 14% rating from the Human Rights Campaign's Corporate Equality Index in 2004. The company had previously lost points because it took action against the equal rights of GLBT people at the time of the merger.
Sexual orientation was taken out of the ExxonMobil non-discrimination policy following Mobil's merger with Exxon. However, ExxonMobil contends in other publications that the non-discrimination policy does apply to sexual orientation, even though it is not written expressly in the policy.
Domestic partner benefits were ended following Mobil's merger with Exxon. Mobil employees who already had DP benefits were allowed to keep them, but no other employees could join after the merger. ExxonMobil does offer DP benefits in countries where same-sex marriage is legal.
- ExxonMobil corporate website
- History of Standard Oil spinoffs and their brands
Funding given by ExxonMobil
- Exxon's list of funded organizations.
- Greenpeace's list of organizations that have received funds from Exxon, with evidence of that funding.
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