KKR has been investing in the energy sector for more than twenty years, and today KKR's energy business spans the globe and covers the full energy supply chain.
Highly experienced in working with complex and regulated businesses, we have also been a key participant in the stakeholder-engagement process, collaborating with policymakers and other key constituents to develop policies that will attract capital to the energy industry and assisting in the building and rebuilding of the energy infrastructure around the world. We believe significant opportunities for investment exist in energy and natural resources and have combined KKR’s sourcing capabilities, industry experience, and financial strength with the expertise of professionals who have the required highly technical skill sets to do so successfully. Our key activities include the continued expansion of the KKR Natural Resources platform; the investment in a new solar project delivering power to the Sacramento Municipal Utility District; the acquisition of Samson Resources, one of the largest privately held oil and gas companies in the U.S.; and exiting our investment in Hilcorp Resources.
One trend we aim to invest behind is the shift in market interest from conventional to unconventional oil and natural gas assets. On one hand, our KKR Natural Resources platform seeks to generate returns through the direct ownership and production of natural resources, providing investors with exposure to commodities with value-added management. As such, we are active acquirers of producing properties that are noncore to their current owners where we can in turn bring our extensive operating resources to bear to generate attractive risk-adjusted and current cash returns for our investors.
On the other hand, through our private equity platform, we have been partners to the energy industry in helping to meet the enormous capital and operating needs created by the rapid development of unconventional basins, providing attractive opportunities to invest in growing shale plays.
Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG)
Energy & Infrastructure investments provide strong opportunities for positive environmental and social impacts, such as helping to achieve energy independence and contributing to new job creation and economic growth. The energy and infrastructure sectors do, however, sometimes involve ESG-related impacts that can affect our stakeholders and the success of our operations. These include occupational health and safety risks for workers on site, use of natural resources and emissions, in addition to other stakeholder concerns related to the direct environmental and social impacts of these operations.
Understanding these issues and their effects on long-term performance, we are strongly committed to managing the ESG risks and opportunities in our energy and infrastructure investments. A key pillar of our strategy in these investments is to actively engage with our stakeholders and thereby better inform our decision making. We work with communities, policy makers, investors, non-governmental organizations, and others to incorporate ESG considerations in our investment and portfolio management decisions and to support sustainable business solutions in energy and infrastructure markets.
We believe that natural gas is an increasingly important part of the global energy supply picture and has a significant role to play in energy independence. In addition, when used as a fuel, it emits less greenhouse gases and other air emissions than do other many other sources of energy. A key development in the natural gas sector is the shift from conventional to unconventional resources. While investing in this growing market, we are committed to actively working with the industry and our stakeholders to better understand and manage the environmental and social risks we face. A priority in this work will be to further develop our support for our companies’ efforts to manage the environmental and social impacts of activities related to hydraulic fracturing for natural gas, commonly referred to as fracking. We recognize that there is a great deal of misunderstanding and concern regarding fracking and its impacts. As such, we are actively involved in regularly assessing the issues, regulatory responses, and operator best practices, such as disclosing the chemicals used in this process and developing strict standards for water use and management.