Energy companies have been in hot water as of late, even cutting costs to survive in a low-price commodities environment. Chevron on Tuesday cut its spending budget in an effort to maintain its dividend.
The company's CEO, John Watson, told CNBC in December that the company's "No. 1 priority is to pay the dividend," adding that it was going "to do what [it could] to cut future spending."
Still, skeptics question the whether dividends are safe as the energy sector remains volatile.
To gauge dividend sustainability, Darren Horowitz, energy analyst at Raymond James, suggested investors consider where a company's debt is trading, its capital allocation model and the current pressure on operational cash flow.