Energy executives and environmentalists were like oil and water until Browne, 53, changed the rules of engagement in a 1997 speech announcing a greener direction for British Petroleum. BP now limits its greenhouse-gas emissions and has invested $1 billion in solar-energy technology, becoming the world's largest photovoltaic manufacturer. At the same time, he has taken BP from near obscurity to the world's No. 3 oil company, buying competitors like Amoco and inspiring other execs to copy his formula for blending environmentalism and strong earnings.
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