featuresan joaquin valley business unit (SJVBU)

For more than a century, Chevron has played a major role in helping meet California’s energy needs. Our San Joaquin Valley Business Unit (SJVBU) is headquartered in Bakersfield and we have operations in Kern, Fresno and Monterey Counties. We are proud to deliver the affordable, reliable and ever-cleaner energy that improves lives and enables human progress.

production operations in six fields across central california

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more than 100 years

Chevron has produced oil and gas in California for more than 100 years, providing the energy to serve residents, businesses and industries, including agriculture. Local oil production helps to promote energy independence while providing economic benefits for the community, including money spent with local suppliers, philanthropic donations and property tax payments that go towards funding local infrastructure. We also employ approximately 750 full-time employees.


a rich history in california

Chevron's rich history

Chevron has deep roots in Central California that go back more than a century to the first well it drilled in Coalinga Field in Fresno County in 1907. Since those first days, we’ve been leading the way to provide reliable, affordable and ever-cleaner energy.

While our company’s name has changed more than once, we’ve always retained our founders’ spirit, grit, innovation and perseverance.


enabling human progress

enabling human progress

The oil and gas we produce are critical to enabling human progress. From the cars we drive to the tractors that grow our crops, to medical advancements, technological innovations and thousands of consumer products, we develop the energy that improves lives and power California forward.


how chevron produces energy in central california

how chevron produces energy in central california

meet our team

Our greatest resource is our people. Their ingenuity, creativity and collaboration have met the complex challenges of energy’s past and will continue to do so into the future. As part of an ongoing series, join us as we meet some of the people working to help us deliver affordable, reliable, and ever-cleaner energy.

Lupe Uriarte

What is your role at Chevron?

I’ve held quite a few jobs at Chevron over the last 21 years, but currently I lead a team that focuses on the reliability and integrity of our equipment by verifying they operate safely and efficiently. We provide engineering services to Operations, Maintenance, and other engineering groups by monitoring, evaluating, and identifying equipment reliability and integrity risks and opportunities, with an emphasis on optimizing equipment life while maintaining strict safety conditions. I live in Bakersfield; my kids go to schools here. So for me, and for Chevron, protecting people and the environment is not just a business decision, but a core value.

What kind of education and training did you receive?

I have a degree in mechanical engineering, but probably my most influential training was in the military. My personality is naturally more reserved and introverted, but my time as a chemical specialist in the U.S. Army enabled me to be much more confident in myself. That training has taught me more than any degree and has helped me the most, not just at Chevron, but in life.

What is your favorite part of your job?

My favorite part of the job is helping mentor others who are just starting out in their careers. I believe that the most critical responsibility that is entrusted to company leaders is developing people. I’m very passionate about it and have made it an integral part of my job to help provide guidance to those who are just starting their careers. Several people who I supervised at the very beginning of their careers are now considered rising leaders in the company. I hope I had something to do with that.

What is something about your job that might surprise people?

People may be surprised to learn how much we use innovative technology to solve problems. For example, we are evaluating using robots to inspect the inside of our tanks and piloting drones to inspect the outside of them. We’ve also started using miniature sensors to detect corrosion in our pipelines. These golf-ball sized monitors are dropped into our pipelines to survey the integrity of the pipes using a magnetic force. The technology helps us home in on areas that need more detailed inspection efforts.

What makes Chevron stand apart from others in the industry?

What distinguishes Chevron the most in the industry is its people and culture. The industry sometimes has the perception of being old school and resistant to change. At Chevron, people are open-minded, they share experiences, and are always helping each other out. That’s what I love about working here.

What would you say is one of the greatest benefits of working at Chevron?

I met my wife two months before I started at Chevron 21 years ago and now we have three beautiful kids. My family is my number one priority. Chevron helps me take care of my number one priority. Working here allows me to have a good career, and still allows me to spend time with my family and do all the things I love to do.

What is something that people may be surprised to learn about you?

People always find the story about why I was named Guadalupe interesting. I was born in a small town in Mexico. When my mother went into labor, I was positioned sideways, which was causing some major health concerns and they weren’t sure if I was going to make it. My grandma was there and, as they were running into trouble, she began praying to the Virgin of Guadalupe – the patron saint of Mexico. She promised that if I survived, they’d name me Guadalupe. So here I am.


season of giving

We know this year has brought adversity to families, friends, and neighbors across our communities, making this a difficult holiday season for many. During this season, we are partnering with local organizations that are working to bring joy to those in need. We also want to ensure that the community knows where to turn to for additional help, should they need it. Below are some resources for people living in Monterey, Fresno and Kern Counties.

Monterey County: Chevron is contributing to the Holiday Giving program at Gathering For Women, a nonprofit organization that provides homeless women throughout Monterey County with basic services including nutritious meals, health services and other essential services. For the holiday season, the women will receive a backpack containing necessary items like blankets, knit hats, hand warmers, and toiletries.

Additional resources for Monterey County can be found here.

Fresno County: Chevron is donating to the City of Coalinga for the annual Christmas Gift Program, which provides clothes, toys, and other essential items for children and families in need during the holiday season.

Additional resources for Fresno County can be found here.

Kern County: Chevron is donating to Bakersfield North Rotary’s Thanksgiving Basket Giveaway 2020, which distributed full Thanksgiving meals -- including a turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, potatoes, green beans, rolls, and a pumpkin pie – to local families in need.

Chevron is also contributing to the Community Action Partnership of Kern’s Head Start Program Coat Drive, which will purchase warm winter coats and distribute them to local children who need them.

Additional resources for Kern County can be found here.


supporting our communities during the COVID-19 crisis

At Chevron, we believe in the power of humanity to solve any challenge. Together with our community partners, we have implemented a series of social investment and support initiatives to help communities and nonprofits address the COVID-19 public health crisis. To date, we’ve committed more than $500,000 to support our communities across Kern, Fresno, and Monterey Counties. We’re also talking with first responders about additional ways we can support their efforts.

We are providing $100,000 grants to each of these healthcare providers to purchase personal protective equipment, including N95 masks, gowns, gloves and goggles, for frontline workers caring for patients at their hospitals in Kern County. Adventist Health, a nonprofit medical center, has created a matching fund to give community members a way to contribute.

We made a $100,000 donation, which was distributed evenly between the Community Medical Centers and the Central California Food Bank, to provide resources and support to frontline medical workers, as well food for families struggling to put meals on the table due to economic burdens from the COVID-19 pandemic in Fresno County.

We provided a grant to support enrichment and educational programs for children in East Bakersfield during school closures. Kids are receiving healthy snacks and meals during the day. During the first two weeks, 25,000 meals were served. The program has been revised to offer emergency full-day care for school age children of first responders, healthcare professionals and essential city and county employees.

We contributed to Lost Hills Park to help fund basic access to food in rural Kern County. Through this collaboration with The Wonderful Company, we are helping meet the needs of 200 households on a bi-weekly basis.

We provided $100,000 to the Kern Economic Development Foundation to deliver Chevron gas cards to first responders, families and small businesses struggling and incurring extra costs or diminished revenues as residents continue to stay at home.

In Fresno, we funded the purchase of approximately 70 mobile devices, such as laptops, iPads and MiFi internet devices, for Fresno City College STEM students. This allows students to access their online education during these trying times.

We committed $100,000 to address the immediate and longer-term needs of vulnerable residents in Monterey County including elderly, homeless, students, and low-income families as they face economic hardships and food insecurity.

protecting the environment

Chevron uses ingenuity to solve today’s complex energy challenges, inspire for tomorrow, and power progress in Central California. As part of our commitment, we operate in a sustainable manner that reduces our environmental footprint.

operations and environment

investing in the community

We are committed to investing in communities across Central California by giving time and resources to support local organizations that make our community a better place to live and work. We make strategic social investments that focus on education, health, economic development and civic engagement.

community and social investments


community feedback – contact us

Chevron’s San Joaquin Valley Business Unit is committed to providing open and transparent means for community members to find information, raise concerns, and have inquiries addressed in a timely manner. Email us at or call our 24-hour Community Hotline at (855) 346-4526. We make every effort to respond to you as quickly as possible. You will receive an initial response within five business days.

Updated: December 2020