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Posts from ‘October, 2007’

HRH Sultan Azlan Shah speaks out on crisis in Malaysian judiciary

By John Donovan

We have recently published articles relating to former Shell employees involved in litigation with Shell Malaysia.


In a pension fund case involving 399 Shell Malaysia pensioners, an appeal court overturned a Judgment that Shell had made unlawful deductions from their retirement funds. One of the grounds cited in the appeal court judgment was that Shell was not capable of wrong doing: clearly absolute bunkum bearing in mind Shell’s atrocious track record of securities fraud and other serious misdeeds which have attracted hundreds of millions of dollars in fines and court settlements. Many of the “399” claimants are elderly, sick and dying. 34 have already died. The Malaysian judiciary has let them down in the most dubious circumstances. “Team A” have applied for leave to appeal to the Federal Court. read more

The Huntsville Forester (Ontario): Shell Canada to conduct testing

by Carlye Malchuk
Oct 31, 2007

Fuel company Shell Canada will be conducting an environmental site assessment at Avery Beach in the coming weeks to determine if there was any leaching of petroleum products into the park.

In the late 1920s the Canadian Oil Company acquired property adjacent to the park that was used as a bulk plant.

The site was taken over by Shell in 1965 but has not been used as a bulk plant for at least 25 years, said John Peck, who works in the communications department at Shell Canada. read more Navy officer killed in attack on vessel protecting Shell oilfield, Nigeria

(Thomson Financial) – A navy officer was killed and four injured in an overnight attack on a naval vessel protecting a Royal Dutch Shell offshore oilfield in southern Nigeria, industry and security sources told Agence France-Presse.

‘We got a report that militants attacked the navy vessel NNS Obula at 2105 hours. The vessel was detailed to protect the EA oilfield operated by Shell. One navy officer was killed while four were injured,’ a Shell security official told AFP.

The State Security Service (SSS) also confirmed the attack. read more Oil Majors Quietly Investing In Renewable Fuel Sector

October 31, 2007

In case you have missed it, the oil majors are quietly investing in the renewable fuel sector.

ConocoPhillips (COP) has made the largest foray with its partnership with Tyson Foods (TSN) to produce biodiesel from chicken fat and a recently announced deal with Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) to produce fuel from biomass (farm waste).

Exxon (XOM), while publicly downplaying and almost mocking the role of biofuels for years, is currently funding research at Stanford University

Marathon Oil (MRO) has actually partnered with ethanol maker The Andersons (ANDE) and the two are producing ethanol from corn at a plant they plan to retrofit when additional feedstock are viable. read more

Fortune Magazine: Oil shale may finally have its moment

In a dusty corner of northwestern Colorado, an energy of the future is beginning to look like the real thing. Can oil shale work? Fortune’s Jon Birger reports.

By Jon Birger, Fortune senior writer
October 31 2007: 5:43 AM EDT

(Fortune Magazine) — Touring a drilling site on a dusty mountain plateau above Rifle, Colo., Harold Vinegar stops, grins and then announces out of the blue, “I love that smell!”

No, the Royal Dutch Shell chief scientist is not referring to the crisp fragrance of the high desert air or the conifer scent wafting from the nearby stand of evergreens. Rather, it’s the faint, asphalt-like aroma of oil shale – a sedimentary rock rich in kerogen, a fossil fuel that is now the focus of Shell’s single biggest R&D investment. read more

The Havard Crimson: Shell Gives $3.75M For Energy Studies

Published On Wednesday, October 31, 2007  3:34 AM
Crimson Staff Writer

A major oil company is shelling out money for programs at the Kennedy School of Government.

A division of Royal Dutch Shell, the world’s second-largest publicly traded oil company, will donate $3.75 million over the next five years to fund energy policy research across the University, the school announced this week.

William W. Hogan, the research director of the Harvard Electric Policy Group and an architect of the agreement, said the school has yet to decide precisely how the money will be allocated. read more

Bloomberg: Macquarie, Babcock May Bid for Shell-Exxon Venture, People Say

By Ambereen Choudhury and Thom Rose

Oct. 31 (Bloomberg) — Macquarie Bank Ltd. and Deutsche Bank AG’s RREEF infrastructure fund are among firms that may bid for a German gas storage and transport network owned partly by Exxon Mobil Corp., said five people involved with the proposals.

BEB Transport & Speicher Service GmbH, a joint venture between Exxon Mobil and Royal Dutch Shell Plc, may fetch at least 1 billion euros ($1.4 billion), said the people, who declined to be identified because the bidding is confidential. Credit Suisse Group is assessing offers, the people said. Babcock & Brown Ltd., an Australian investment bank, may also bid, they said. read more

Reuters: Shell says oil theft in Nigeria growing again

Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:10 AM BST

CAPE TOWN, Oct 31 (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSa.L: Quote, Profile , Research) said on Wednesday that crude oil theft at sites in Nigeria was rising, posing a problem for development and a safety risk for those engaging in the practice.

“It is on the rise again,” Ann Pickard, regional executive vice-president for Shell Exploration & Production Africa Ltd., said at the Africa Upstream 2007 oil conference in Cape Town.

Shell, the world’s second-largest non government-controlled oil company by market capitalisation, is among a handful of oil majors affected by political unrest in Nigeria, the largest oil producer in Africa. read more

UpstreamOnline: Malampaya oil rim given $1bn price tag

By Upstream staff

Philippine National Oil Company’s upstream arm PNOC Exploration Corporation (PNOC-EC) has estimated it would cost around $1 billion to develop the Malampaya oil rim, a thin layer of oil at the bottom of the Malampaya gas field, PNOC-EC president Rafael Del Pilar said.

The oil rim’s development would involve a capital expenditure of around $500 million and an operational expense of around $400 million, Del Pilar told local media.

PNOC-EC would raise a portion of the development cost through proceeds from its share offering scheduled for February next year, Del Pilar said. read more

Financial Times: Tehran pushes for end to delays on gas field deal

By Najmeh Bozorgmehr in Tehran
Published: October 31 2007 02:00 | Last updated: October 31 2007 02:00

Iran says it is ready to address the concerns of western oil groups that have blamed spiralling global costs for delays in signing up to multibillion dollar contracts to develop the South Pars natural gas field.

“The increase in international [construction costs] and [the] fall in the dollar are logical concerns of companies which can be met through negotiations, provided illogical demands are not mixed with them,” said Ali Vakili, managing director of the Pars Oil and Gas Company, which handles development of the South and North Pars gas fields. read more

The Wall Street Journal: Why Oil May Not Stop at $100

Wall Street Journal image

As Reservoirs Age and Demand Grows,
Prices May Go Even Higher
October 31, 2007; Page A6

LONDON — Oil at $100 a barrel? That may not be the worst of it.

Several leading oil experts, gathered here yesterday for an annual energy conference, sketched a near-term future in which mounting global demand and shrinking supplies push oil prices well past the $100-a-barrel mark.

Consuming countries, they argued, will simply have to deal with the fact that new pockets of oil are getting far harder and more expensive to tap. That, combined with years of underinvestment by the industry, has led to a tapering off of new oil supplies that will continue for years, despite rising energy demand in Asia, the Middle East and some industrialized countries. read more

Daily Telegraph: Oil market is out of our control, says Opec

Daily Telegraph image

Crude oil options traders work on the
floor of the New York Mercantile Exchange

By Russell Hotten, Industry Editor
Last Updated: 6:35am GMT 31/10/2007

OPEC oil ministers say they are powerless in the face of many factors driving up the price of crude, with one member of the producers’ cartel warning that the ‘market is out of control’.

Mohammed bin Dhaen al-Hamli, president of Opec, told a conference in London yesterday that record oil prices are the result of speculative investment and international political tensions. “We are of course concerned about high oil prices,” he said. But “the market is increasingly driven by forces beyond Opec’s control”. read more

Business Day Online (Nigeria): Fresh facts emerge on controversies over Shell MD


Why is Royal Dutch Shell planning to drop Basil Omiyi as the managing director of Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC)?

Contrary to speculations over age and length of service as reasons for his imminent removal, Omiyi may be removed to pave way for his deputy, Dale Rollins, an expatriate, to emerge as the managing director.

The move is propelled by government’s bid to review the joint-venture agreement, and there may be no stopping Shell’s parent company in The Hague, Netherlands from installing an expatriate. read more

LIVE CHAT COMMENT 30 OCT 2007: ‘Sakhalin Project Team morale at all time low’: ‘bring back the General’

Posting on Live Chat by Guest 1116

Guest 1116: Sakhalin Project Team morale at all time low this morning on this remote island as Schoolmaster Craig and Helpless Huijskes swing axe wildly and despatch our OPF Project Manager, Bernt Granas for no reason at all !!!!! Neither Craig nor Huijskes know anything about project management and even less about how to manage people. Cold, heartless, insensitive, incompetent and worthless managers. No wonder the project is delayed and wildly over budget. Time for all of us to get out of here before these read more

Reuters: Shell says on schedule with Qatar Pearl GTL plant

Tue Oct 30, 2007 6:01 PM GMT

DOHA, Oct 30 (Reuters) – Construction is on schedule at the project that has attracted Royal Dutch Shell’s largest foreign investment, a super-clean fuels plant in Qatar with a cost of up to $18 billion, a senior executive said on Tuesday.

“We’re broadly on schedule for a start up by the end of the decade,” said Shell’s Qatar Country Manager Andrew Brown, who is also managing director of the 140,000 barrels per day Pearl gas-to-liquids project. read more

Royal Dutch Shell top secret documents being revealed daily on ‘anti-Shell’ website

By John Donovan

Publication on a daily basis of top secret Royal Dutch Shell internal documents relating to the reserves scandal (first revealed to an astonished world in *January 2004) began yesterday on the website The site has been described by the Financial Times as being “anti-Shell”.

*The Times: How Shell blew a hole in a 100-year reputation (Jan 10, 2004) 

*Daily Telegraph: Shell drops ‘bombshell’ on reserves (Jan 10, 2004) read more

Rocky Mountain News (Colorado): Attorney general says Rocky Mountain Arsenal staying contaminated past cleanup date

By Hector Gutierrez, Rocky Mountain News
October 30, 2007

Rocky Mountain Arsenal is expected to remain contaminated beyond 2010 when a cleanup was scheduled to be completed, according to an assessment released Monday by the Colorado attorney general.

The Natural Resource Damage Assessment Plan found that hazardous substances will continue to move into groundwater from contaminated soils below the surface and “thus groundwater at the Arsenal will not be clean for the foreseeable future.” read more

Bloomberg: Qatar Says Gas Is `Undervalued’ Compared With Oil (Update1)

By Fred Pals

Oct. 30 (Bloomberg) — Qatar, the world’s largest shipper of natural gas, said natural gas is “very, very undervalued” compared with oil.

“I’m unhappy, unsatisfied with the gas price,” Qatari Oil Minister Abdullah bin Hamad al-Attiyah said at an oil conference in London today. The fuel is more environmentally friendly, and projects to construct liquefied natural gas plants have become very expensive, he said.

“The world is underestimating the importance of gas,” Al- Attiyah said. read more

International Herald Tribune: Oil company says 6 kidnapped foreign workers were released in Nigeria

The Associated Press
Published: October 30, 2007

LAGOS, Nigeria: Six foreign oil workers who were kidnapped from an offshore oil field in the Niger Delta were released Tuesday after three days in captivity, officials said.

The Indian and Polish workers are in good health, Italian energy giant Eni SpA said.

Gunmen in speedboats kidnapped the workers at dawn Friday from the Mystras, some 50 miles (80 kilometers) offshore. Another Nigerian worker was reported to have been wounded in the leg in the attack. read more GazpromNeft in Sakhalin venture talks with StatoilHydro, Chevron, Shell

MOSCOW (Thomson Financial) – Russian oil firm GazpromNeft is in talks with StatoilHydro, Chevron and Royal Dutch Shell on forming a joint venture to develop oilfields off Sakhalin island and the north Russian province of Chukotka, said its president Alexander Dyukov.
As yet the western companies have not given a response to Gazprom Neft’s proposals, the head of the Gazprom unit was quoted as saying by the Ria-Novosti agency.

The Sakhalin block, which Gazprom Neft bought from rival TNK-BP, is estimated to contain 50-60 mln tonnes of oil. read more

CNNMoney: Shell & Harley-Davidson Alliance Reaches Motorcycle Enthusiasts Across the Country

Iconic Brands Collaborate to Bring ‘Ease’ to Easy Riders
October 30, 2007: 08:00 AM EST

HOUSTON, Oct. 30 /PRNewswire/ — What does Harley-Davidson recommend for all their motorcycles? Premium gasoline. And what does a Harley(R) rider need to find quality gasoline while riding their motorcycle? A really detailed map … until now. Harley-Davidson Motor Company (Harley-Davidson) has begun an alliance with Shell Oil Products US (Shell) that will soon place all 14,000+ Shell-branded stations on the motorcycle maker’s online Harley- Davidson(SM) Ride Planner, where riders will find Shell V-Power(R) premium gasoline. As part of this alliance, Shell also will proudly be the exclusive fuels sponsor of the Harley-Davidson(R) 105th Anniversary Celebration in August 2008. read more


08:50 – 29 October 2007
The benefits of sharing subsea solutions will come under the spotlight this week when international subsea engineering and software company MCS brings its annual technical conference to Aberdeen for the first time.

Delegates from each of MCS’s six bases around the world are to attend the two-day event at the Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre with guest speakers joining more than 20 internal presenters drawn from both the engineering and software development sides of the business. read more

UpstreamOnline: Nigeria flaring fines ‘to target operators’

By Upstream staff

Any penalty imposed on oil producers in Nigeria for gas flaring beyond a 2008 deadline should target only the operators and not their partners, Tony Chikwueke, the head of Nigeria’s oil regulator said today.

This means Western multinationals could face fines or other penalties for flaring while the Nigerian state oil company, which owns majority stakes in the joint ventures operated by the foreign companies and gets more of the profits, would be exempt.

“In my view we should have a system that penalises the actual operators and not their partners,” Tony Chukwueke, director of the Department of Petroleum Resources, told Reuters in an interview. read more

The Wall Street Journal: Shell to Focus on Asian Nations

October 30, 2007; Page A10

BEIJING — Royal Dutch Shell PLC is “moving East” to countries including China and India to take advantage of booming demand for oil products, a senior Shell executive said.

Demand in Asia is growing strongly along with the region’s economies, while demand in Europe and the U.S. is moderating, because of high pump prices, higher vehicle efficiency and greater use of substitutes such as biofuels, said Rob Routs, Shell’s executive director of downstream operations. In the oil business, downstream typically refers to the business of refining oil into fuels like gasoline and selling them. read more

The Wall Street Journal: Handicapping the Environmental Gold Rush

WSJ image

In the race to profit off the scramble to go green, there will be winners and losers. Here’s how the players currently stack up.

October 29, 2007; Page R1

The green stampede is on.

As a global economy powered by cheap fossil fuel comes under intense pressure to change, corporate executives are racing to stay ahead of the tectonic shift in their world.

From Capitol Hill to California and Brussels to Beijing, multinational companies are stepping up their lobbying and tweaking their product lines in response to demands that they get more environmentally attuned. New companies — even new industries — are challenging the established giants to exploit a growing market for everything from green cars to green fuels. read more

The Guardian: Mud, sweat and tears

The vast tar sands of Alberta in Canada hold oil reserves six times the size of Saudi Arabia’s. But this ‘black gold’ is proving a mixed blessing for the frontier town of Fort McMurray, fuelling both prosperity and misery. As the social and environmental toll mounts, Aida Edemariam reports on the dark side of a boom town
Aida Edemariam
Tuesday October 30 2007

You’ve only got to stroll down Hardin Street to the main drag, then hang a left and walk a couple more short blocks, to see what Fort McMurray is about. It wouldn’t be the whole story, but you would catch the drift. You’d pass the Boomtown Casino, strip malls, and a club called Cowboys proudly advertising “naughty schoolgirl nights”. Then the Royal Canadian Mounted Police station, the municipal offices, the Oil Sands Hotel, and Diggers bar, with its advertisement for exotic dancers. You would be passed by Humvees and countless pick-up trucks, each more souped up than the next, many covered in dried mud, many carrying further 4x4s – in winter, snowmobiles; in summer, all-terrain vehicles on which to go chasing through the bush, which is visible from the main street. And if the wind is from the north-west, you can smell oil on the air: heavy, slightly sour, unmistakable. Round here, they call it the smell of money. read more

Financial Times: Dollar and oil hit new records

By Michael Mackenzie in New York
Published: October 29 2007 20:20 | Last updated: October 30 2007 01:12

Oil hit a new record high of $93.80 and the dollar struck a new low yesterday as investors showed their growing certainty that the US Federal Reserve will cut interest rates on Wednesday.

The same conviction also saw gold approach $800 a troy ounce – its highest price for 28 years – while equities made gains. The move into gold reflects how investors fear rising inflation from the twin forces of higher oil prices and a weaker dollar. read more

Daily Telegraph: How King Abdullah has tackled terrorism

By David Blair
Last Updated: 12:01am GMT 30/10/2007

Whenever the King of Saudi Arabia pays a state visit to a Western ally, all the ingredients for controversy are present.

No matter how many flags line the Mall, the absolute monarch of a theocratic state that oppresses women and routinely tortures opponents will never receive a warm public welcome.

The row over King Abdullah’s visit to Britain this week is predictable – and many of the criticisms of Saudi Arabia are justified. But a few salient points are at risk of being lost. read more Record Oil Prices Set To Drop, Says Shell Man

The price of oil is unlikely to stay at its current record levels, the head of Shell has said.

Shell UK chairman James Smith told Sky News’ Jeff Randall Live that the rise was the result of speculation and international tensions.

Oil is now priced at a record $93 a barrel.

“It’s a little hard to explain why the oil price is as high as it is at the moment, because there’s plenty of oil and oil products around- it’s not as if there’s a shortage,” said Mr Smith. read more Ireland, Rossport Day of Action, November 9th

Ireland, Rossport Day of Action, November 9th – Get on the bus – Direct Action against Shell

The Workers Solidarity Movement is urging anarchists and other supporters of Shell To Sea to get to Rossport for the day-of-action on November 9th. WSM members will join people from around the country in showing, one year since Gardai batoned protesters, that we will not be intimidated. — Shell have shown contempt for the concerns of locals about a high pressure gas pipe running close to their houses. They have refused to move their operation offshore, claiming it would be too expensive. Shell makes a profit of €375million every week. The cost of moving the Rossport operation offshore would be €360million. Those figures speak for themselves. — But why should anyone be surprised? It is the same old story of a capitalist government giving a “dig out” to a capitalist company, and always at our expense. read more

Controversies surrounding Royal Dutch Shell

By John Donovan

I have for some time been a major contributor to Wikipedia articles about Royal Dutch Shell, including the major article: “Controversies surrounding Royal Dutch Shell”.

On 6 October 2007, a Wikipedia administrator who uses the pseudonym “Jreferee” nominated the article for deletion.

Although personal attacks are frowned upon under Wikipedia etiquette, Jreferee, who is aware that I post information using my real name rather than a pseudonym, made a number of serious allegations about me which are untrue. read more

CNBC: India says 4 oil workers kidnapped in Nigeria are safe

Updated: 1:02 p.m. ET Oct. 29, 2007

LAGOS, Nigeria – Four Indian oil workers who were kidnapped in the Niger Delta region last week are safe, officials said Monday.

The Indians were among six foreign workers abducted at dawn Friday from an oil facility off the coast of Nigeria. The other hostages are Polish, according to Italian energy giant Eni SpA.

Eni had originally reported that the hostages included Nigerians and at least one Filipino.

“There is confirmation of the news that four (Indian nationals) are safe and unharmed,” said Indian Foreign Ministry spokesman Navtej Sarna. read more



From: John Donovan [mailto:[email protected]]
Sent: 29 October 2007 12:58
To: ‘michiel.brandjes
Cc: jeroenvanderveer; malcolmbrinded; richardwiseman
Subject: Top Secret Shell Internal Documents

Dear Mr Brandjes

As you are probably aware, we have published a number of confidential Shell internal documents relating to the reserves fraud: – read more

Bloomberg: Shell China Chemical Venture to Reach Full Capacity (Update1)

By Wang Ying

Oct. 29 (Bloomberg) — Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Europe’s largest oil company, and China National Offshore Oil Corp. will run their petrochemical venture in southern China at full capacity this year to meet rising demand.

“The annual capacity will meet design capacity, if not more,” Rob Routs, head of Shell’s refining business, told reporters in Beijing today. “It will be the same level next year, unless we find ways to develop the plant.”

The $4.3 billion chemical plant in Huizhou in Guangdong province started operating in January last year. Nearby, China National Offshore is building its first refinery to process as much as 12 million metric tons a year of crude oil into fuels starting in June 2008 and to supply naphtha to the chemical joint venture. read more

International Herald Tribune: Pressure on oil companies grows to end gas flaring in Nigeria

By Sarah J. Wachter

Monday, October 29, 2007
PARIS: For three minutes, on the day last May when Royal Dutch Shell released its first quarter earnings figures, a flame shot high into the air in front of the company’s head office in The Hague, scorching a human chain of about 40 protesters that circled it, a few meters away, to block police efforts to stamp it out.

The 15-meter, or 50-foot, tall gas flare, created by the Dutch artist Erik Hobijn, was engineered by Friends of the Earth Netherlands to protest gas flaring by Shell in Nigeria. read more

Aspen Daily News (Colorado): Shell counting on ice for oil shale development

David Frey – Aspen Daily News Correspondent
Mon 10/29/2007 00:01AM MST

RIO BLANCO — Above northwestern Colorado’s rolling hills studded with piñon, juniper and sagebrush rises a maze of giant pipes and frost-covered tubes that circle a football-sized testing site and plunge into wells bored a quarter-mile into the pale rock below.

A refrigeration and pump unit the size of a warehouse pumps cooling fluid into the wells in an effort to turn the groundwater into walls of ice that will line the holes. read more

Bloomberg: Europe Energy Day Ahead: Crude Oil Rises Above $93 Due to Storm

Financial Times: Crude oil price likely to hit peak

By Javier Blas in London
Last updated: October 29 2007 08:08

Crude oil prices appear increasingly likely to hit a record in real terms reached during the second oil crisis in 1979, as nominal prices on Monday continued rising well above $90 a barrel.

West Texas Intermediate crude hit a fresh nominal all-time high of $93.20 a barrel oon Monday on a combination of renewed geopolitical tension over Iran’s nuclear programme, weakness of the US dollar and low inventories.

The price leap came after Mexico said it was shutting about 600,000 barrels a day of oil output, or 20 per cent of its total, due to bad weather in the Gulf of Mexico. Authorities hope to restore output in the near term as the cold weather front moves away from the production and terminal areas. read more

Financial Times: Alberta treads fine line on oil royalties

By Sheila McNulty in Houston and Daina Lawrence in Ottawa
Published: October 29 2007 02:00 | Last updated: October 29 2007 02:00

Canada may have just done the impossible – raising royalties on the oil industry without casting itself as greedy and unreasonable and driving companies out of the country.

Certainly no one is thrilled to be paying more than the current low royalties, but the increases unveiled late on Thursday are rising with the price in oil.

While many other oil-rich nations are provoking the ire of international oil companies with unreasonable demands, the sliding scale determined by the price of oil starting January 2009 seems mild by comparison. read more

Financial Times: Alberta treads fine line on oil royalties

By Sheila McNulty in Houston and Daina Lawrence in Ottawa
Published: October 29 2007 02:00 | Last updated: October 29 2007 02:00

Canada may have just done the impossible – raising royalties on the oil industry without casting itself as greedy and unreasonable and driving companies out of the country.

Certainly no one is thrilled to be paying more than the current low royalties, but the increases unveiled late on Thursday are rising with the price in oil.

While many other oil-rich nations are provoking the ire of international oil companies with unreasonable demands, the sliding scale determined by the price of oil starting January 2009 seems mild by comparison. read more

The Guardian: Greenwash fatigue

Consumers are demanding genuine action from businesses on sustainability and GNM initiatives, such as the Climate Change Summit, are helping them achieve it

Monday October 29 2007

THE GUARDIAN: This is the beginning of an interesting and dynamic journey for the commercial departments as we look at how to implement our commitment to become a successful sustainable media company.

We recognise it will neither be easy nor quick, and answers rarely present themselves in simple black and white terms.

Our first step has been to become the first media organisation to employ a fulltime commercial sustainable development manager. The creation of the post was the result of our work with Forum for the Future. read more

Daily Telegraph: Aim market: oil and gas potential M&A targets

By Ben Bland
Last Updated: 12:21am GMT 29/10/2007

The oil and gas sector is set for a major M&A boom with every stock in the sector a possible bid target, according to new research from the corporate finance team at Ernst & Young.

The Alternative Investment Market (Aim) has been relatively quiet in terms of deal flow since the credit crisis hit markets over the summer. But that trend could well be reversed as the 90-plus companies in the oil exploration and production sector seem likely to go through a phase of significant consolidation. read more Oil Sets Record, Surpassing $93 a Barrel

Oct 29 02:04 AM US/Eastern
Associated Press Writer       
SINGAPORE (AP) – Oil prices surpassed $93 a barrel Monday in Asian trading to hit a new trading high amid concerns about political tensions in the Middle East and the weakening U.S. dollar.

Prices were also supported by worries about inadequate supplies ahead of the Northern Hemisphere winter, when demand is expected to be strong.

Light, sweet crude for December delivery jumped $1.32 to $93.18 a barrel in Asian electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange midmorning in Singapore. read more

The Washingon Post: Iran Adapts to Economic Pressure

Oil Market Could Help It Weather U.S. Sanctions

By Steven Mufson and Robin Wright
Washington Post Staff Writers
Monday, October 29, 2007; A01

Confronted by mounting U.S. and U.N. pressure, Iran has been steadily shifting its trade from West to East and, with the benefit of record high oil prices, is likely to be able to withstand the new U.S. sanctions, according to U.S., European and Iranian analysts.

China, a permanent member of the Security Council that can veto any U.N. resolution, is expected to overtake Germany as Iran’s biggest trading partner this year. Germany and other European countries had consistently been Iran’s largest trading partners for more than a decade, according to the Iran Investment Monthly. read more

Business Week: GM’s Fuel-Cell Hedge

October 29, 2007

General Motors is investing in fuel cells, but major obstacles suggest that other alternative-energy technologies have a better chance of success

By Jim Henry

General Motors (GM) says it is determined to force fuel-cell vehicles past the chicken-or-the-egg stage, where they have been stuck for decades, with a goal of a small but commercially viable fuel-cell fleet by around 2015. Fuel cells run on hydrogen, producing electricity to run an electric motor. The only emission is pure water. But which comes first? Fuel-cell vehicles or the infrastructure to keep fuel-cell vehicles supplied with hydrogen fuel? read more Shell Wildlife Photographer of the Year hit by singing protest image 

 Shell’s real effect on wildlife

rikki | 28.10.2007 00:01 | Climate Chaos | Ecology | London

Today at the natural history museum in london, the Shell-sponsored exhibition of wildlife photography was targeted by activists from ‘rising tide’ and others. they used singing and leafleting to peacefully highlight the greenwash and irony of an oil company sponsoring a wildlife photography exhibition.

At lunchtime today, activists entered the grand hall of the natural history museum and suprised security guards by staging a melodic protest at the entrance to the shell-sponsored exhibition. read more

Reuters: UPDATE 1-Shell expects China naphtha cracker to run at full

Mon Oct 29, 2007 3:16am GMT 

BEIJING, Oct 29 (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L: Quote, Profile, Research) expects its Chinese naphtha cracker to meet or surpass its design annual capacity of 800,000 tonnes this year and next, a top executive said on Monday.

The cracker in southern Guangdong province operated at 94 percent of capacity in the first nine months of this year, up from 85 percent last year, Rob Routs, Shell Group Executive Director Downstream told a group of reporters.

“Annual production this year will meet design capacity if not more,” Routs said. “Next year they promised me it will be at the same level.” read more Biofuel crops a ‘crime against humanity’ image

Crime: A child under 10, like this one, dies from hunger or disease related to malnutrition every five seconds. Photo: Eldson Chagara

Philip Hopkins
October 29, 2007

A PROMINENT United Nations activist against famine has demanded a five-year moratorium on biofuels as a new report showed Australia could use its sugar to become a major global provider of ethanol.

The UN Special Rapporteur on the right to food, Jean Ziegler, said it was a “crime against humanity” to convert food crops to fuel, driving up food prices when there are 854 million hungry people in the world. read more

Developments in Royal Dutch Shell Securities Fraud litigation

By John Donovan



LEAD PLANTIFFS: Pennsylvania State Employees Retirement System and the Pennsylvania Public School Employees Retirement System

DEFENDANTS: Royal Dutch Petroleum Company and The “Shell” Transport and Trading Company p.l.c.

We recently published an update on the Global class action brought against Shell in the U.S. Courts.

Titanic battle in U.S. Courts over Royal Dutch Shell reserves scandal read more

Sunday Herald (Scotland): Why BP is cutting back in Aberdeen as oil prices soar

By Selwyn Parker
Business comment

ABOUT THE only place in Scotland where the price of West Texas Intermediate Crude is on everybody’s lips is Aberdeen. But even in oil city there must be some confusion about the relationship between the wholesale cost of the black stuff and BP’s imminent cutbacks there.

The big question is why BP is taking the scalpel to its Aberdeen-headquartered North Sea business when the benchmark price of oil keeps on breaking new records and presumably boosting profits. read more

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