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Posts from ‘April, 2015’

Shell cuts 2015 capex, sees downstream downturn

Screen Shot 2015-04-30 at 09.37.24Shell cuts 2015 capex, sees downstream downturn

London (Platts)–30 Apr 2015

* Capex reduced by more than $2 billion
* Decision on Majnoon development pushed back to 2017
* CFO says refining margins already worsening

Shell said Thursday it had reduced its expected 2015 capital expenditure to $33 billion from previous guidance of a little more than $35 billion as the company continues to adjust its business to the lower oil-price environment.

Shell, releasing its first-quarter results, also said it continued to reduce its operating costs and capital spending, with Q1 operating expenditure down by $1.1 billion year on year. read more

Royal Dutch Shell profits slump as oil price slide puts energy giant on back foot ahead of mega-merger with BG

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Earnings dropped steeply from $7.33billion last year to $3.25billion

Company hopes oil prices will rise to $90 a barrel by 2018 


Oil giant Royal Dutch Shell has reported a near 60 per cent slump in first quarter profits after it was hit by the fall in oil and gas prices.

Earnings dropped steeply from $7.33billion ($4.6billion) last year to $3.25billion – though the figure was better than City forecasts of about $2.5billion. 

The price of a barrel of Brent crude has fallen by half since last year after peaking at about $115 a barrel in the summer of 2014.

The company, which earlier this month announced a £55billion agreed offer for UK-based BG Group, said it expects oil prices to rise to $90 a barrel by 2018 – justifying the 50 per cent premium it bid to buy its rival.   read more

Shell pushes on with Arctic exploration as it awaits U.S. permit

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Screen Shot 2015-03-02 at 19.49.45Business | Thursday Apr 30, 2015 

Shell pushes on with Arctic exploration as it awaits U.S. permit

(Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell is pushing ahead with plans to explore for oil in the Arctic Ocean near Alaska this summer despite opposition from environmental groups.

The Anglo-Dutch oil major is preparing “an armada of 25 vessels” to begin a two-year program to explore two to three wells in the Chukchi Sea off the coast of Alaska, Chief Financial Officer Simon Henry said on Thursday.

“We are currently on track. Some of the permits are issued at the last moment,” he told reporters. read more

Judge extends TRO after hearing on Greenpeace injunction

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Judge extends Temporary Restraining Order after hearing on Greenpeace injunction

Shell’s court battle to obtain a preliminary injunction against Greenpeace USA continued in U.S. District Court Judge Sharon Gleason’s court in Anchorage April 28.

Gleason is considering whether to issue an order that would keep Greenpeace protestors at a certain distance from vessels Shell hopes to use for its 2015 Arctic offshore drilling.

After the hearing, Gleason extended the temporary restraining order against Greenpeace covering two drill rigs and a heavy lift vessel; that order issued April 11 expired April 28 and she extended it to May 9 or until she rules on Shell’s request for an injunction that would cover all 27 vessels being mobilized for its Arctic exploration this summer. read more

Shell’s first-quarter profits plunge 56% to $3.2bn

Screen Shot 2015-04-30 at 09.37.24FT: Shell’s first-quarter profits plunge 56% to $3.2bn

30 April 2015

Christopher Adams, Energy Editor

Royal Dutch Shell suffered a near 60 per cent slide in first-quarter profits, hit by plunging crude prices, but beat expectations as a strong contribution from its refining and trading business prevented a steeper fall.


Royal Dutch Shell Plc CEO Statement




“Our results reflect the strength of our integrated business activities, against a backdrop of lower oil prices. Meanwhile, in what is clearly a difficult industry environment, we continue to take steps to further improve competitive performance by redoubling our efforts to drive a sharper focus on the bottom line in Shell.

Part of this sharper focus is the sale of non-strategic assets. Asset sales total over $2 billion so far this year, as we successfully reduced our onshore footprint in Nigeria. read more

Shell Posts Rise in Profit Despite Sharp Revenue Decline

The Wall Street Journal: Shell Posts Rise in Profit Despite Sharp Revenue Decline

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Fall in revenue indicates impact of low oil prices


April 30, 2015

LONDON— Royal Dutch Shell PLC on Thursday reported a 7% rise in first-quarter profit from a year earlier but also posted a steep fall in revenue, giving investors a glimpse of the impact weak oil prices are having on the business.

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Write to Ian Walker at [email protected] and Sarah Kent at [email protected]


Shell profits beat expectations on refining boost

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Screen Shot 2015-04-03 at 09.56.31Shell profits beat expectations on refining boost:

Business | Thu Apr 30, 2015 7:26am BST

(Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell on Thursday reported a lower than expected 56 percent drop in first quarter net income at $3.2 billion (2 billion pounds), as refining and trading profits offset a decline in earnings from oil and gas output.

Shell maintained a dividend of 47 cents per share and said it would use its planned $70 billion acquisition of smaller British rival BG Group to further optimise its asset base.

Profits from refining and trading rose to $2.65 billion in the first quarter of 2015 from $1.575 billion a year earlier, offsetting a sharp drop in oil and gas production earnings to $675 million from $5.7 billion. read more

Shell’s Shocking Share of the Groningen Earthquake Costs

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Shell’s Shocking Share of the Groningen Earthquake Costs

By a Regular Contributor

The Dutch government does not seem to be very pleased with Shell: it’s action to reverse the burden of proof in Groningen cases seems to imply that Shell cannot be trusted…

For each of the 250,000 potential claimants to take Shell to court individually and give Shell the opportunity to drag things out, produce dubious experts, and essentially bankrupt everyone before they can obtain redress would also create a legal nightmare (out of which Shell would probably emerge essentially unscathed)  read more

Can Shell Afford To Drill In The Arctic?

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By Charles KennedyWed, 29 April 2015

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Screen Shot 2015-04-08 at 08.12.04How can Shell possibly finance the purchase of BG?

Royal Dutch Shell is set to report its first quarter earnings, and by all accounts, it will be a doozy. Analysts predict a 60 percent decline in earnings from a year earlier, including a massive 7 percent fall in production.

But the price tag for BG will be $70 billion, a colossal sum in a period of low oil prices. Shell has already said that it would undertake a major divestment campaign to rid itself of assets it does not see as integral to its future. Purchasing BG is a sign that Shell sees itself as a company that will be increasingly a producer of LNG and offshore oil. read more

Shell Accused Of Misleading Its Shareholders About The Risks Of Arctic Drilling

Screen Shot 2015-04-14 at 09.05.35BY ELISE SHULMAN — GUEST CONTRIBUTOR POSTED 29 APRIL 2015 on

Shell Accused Of Misleading Its Shareholders About The Risks Of Arctic Drilling

If Royal Dutch Shell’s Arctic drilling program leads to a major spill, it could cost the oil company — and therefore its shareholders — an entire year’s worth of profit, according to a Tuesday legal filing by the conservation group Oceana and a University of Chicago law clinic.

But the company’s investors are not aware of that risk, the two groups alleged. Because of that, the groups filed a petition to the Securities and Exchange Commission, requesting that the agency launch a formal investigation into Shell’s risk disclosures to shareholders relating to its activities in the Arctic Ocean. read more

Mayo men sue gardaí over alleged brutality at Shell to Sea protest

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Article from published Wed 29 April 2015

Mayo men sue Irish Cops over alleged brutality at Shell to Sea protest *(were the cops tipsy?)

Three Mayo men are suing for damages over alleged garda brutality at a Shell to Sea protest eight years ago.

Patrick Coyle, and brothers Patrick and Martin O’Donnell, claim they were assaulted at Bellanaboy bridge on January 19, 2007.

It is the men’s case that gardaí displayed brutality and indiscipline during a protest outside the Shell oil refinery at Bellanaboy.

They claim Patrick Coyle was punched in the face and struck on the back of the head while trying to stop another demonstrator being pulled from the line of protesters by gardaí. read more

Time, and oil prices, ticking for Shell-BG deal

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“…its not inconceivable that BG shareholders could start to agitate for a higher bid or indeed a competing bid..”

(Reuters) – Rising oil prices are putting Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) under pressure to execute its landmark $70 billion deal to buy rival BG (BG.L) as soon as possible before investors in BG start to take a more critical look at the terms.

Announced three weeks ago, the deal was seen as a bold bet by Shell on the oil price recovering to $80-$90 per barrel within three years, justifying a 50 percent premium the Anglo-Dutch giant agreed to pay for BG in the biggest oil merger of the decade. read more



A 194 page Complaint filed in the US Courts two months ago confirms that investigations are underway by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, the EU Commission and the UK Serious Fraud Office into an alleged oil price-fixing conspiracy involving Shell, BP, Statoil and others. 

The plaintiffs provide what they describe as “concrete evidence” within the Complaint of oil price manipulation.

A link to the entire 194 page document is provided.

Extracts from 194 page Court document dated 27 Feb 2015


Case 1:13-md-02475-ALC Document 308 Filed 02/27/15



1. This action arises from manipulations of North Sea Brent Crude Oil Market  (defined herein) by Defendants Shell International Trading and Shipping Company Limited (“STASCO”), Shell Trading US Company, BP pic (“BP”), BP America, Inc., BP Corporation North America Inc., Statoil ASA (“Statoil”), Statoil US Holdings Inc. (“Statoil US”), Morgan Stanley Capital Group, Inc. (“MSCGI”), Trafigura Beheer B.V., Trafigura AG, Phibro Trading LLC (“Phibro”), Phibro Commodities Limited, Vitol, S.A. (“Vitol”), Vitol, Inc., Hess Energy Trading Company, LLC (“HETCO”), Mercuria Energy Trading S.A., Mercuria Energy Trading, Inc., (collectively, “Defendants”) since at least 2002 through the present (the “Class Period”). read more

Shell, Greenpeace spar over Arctic drilling safety zones

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Associated Press article published Wed 29 April 2015

Shell, Greenpeace spar over Arctic drilling safety zones

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Attorneys for Royal Dutch Shell PLC presented testimony to a federal court judge Tuesday that the company needs safety zones around its Arctic drill fleet to prevent Greenpeace USA activists from endangering company workers and themselves.

An attorney for Greenpeace told U.S. District Judge Sharon Gleason that Shell’s request would usurp the maritime authority Congress gave to the Coast Guard and harm free speech rights of Greenpeace activists, who have the right to approach Shell vessels to draw attention to harmful drilling in the Arctic. read more

Dutch parliament reverses burden of proof in gas damage claims

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AMSTERDAM | BY TOBY STERLING:Tuesday 28 April 2015

Dutch parliament reverses burden of proof in gas damage claims

(Reuters) – The Dutch parliament on Tuesday voted to reverse the burden of proof in disputes over damages to buildings caused by the production of gas at Groningen, Europe’s largest natural gas field, a potentially expensive decision.

Estimates of damage to buildings in Groningen by earthquakes caused by gas production range from 6.5 billion euros ($7.1 billion) to 30 billion in the coming 30 years.

Under the motion approved by parliament, the company that operates the Groningen field, a joint venture including Shell, Exxon and the Dutch government, would have to provide evidence that disputed damage claims are bogus, rather than claimants having to show evidence they are legitimate. read more

Fat cat bosses enjoy a £350,000 pay rise with Royal Dutch Shell chief the top earner on £19.5m

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Fat cat bosses enjoy a £350,000 pay rise with Royal Dutch Shell chief the top earner on £19.5m

Fat-cat bosses at Britain’s biggest firms saw their pay and perks surge by an average of £350,000 last year.

Topping the list from the group is Royal Dutch Shell chief executive, Ben van Beurden, who got £19.5m, up from just over £7m in 2013.

Calculations based on figures in Shell’s report showed van Beurden’s package was 218 times more than the oil giant’s average employee owned. read more

Shell financial reports about Arctic drilling are too ‘rosy,’ environmentalists charge

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Screen Shot 2015-04-15 at 13.15.58By Yereth Rosen Alaska Dispatch News: April 28, 2015

Shell financial reports about Arctic drilling are too ‘rosy,’ environmentalists charge

Shell has understated the financial risks of exploring for oil in the Arctic Ocean and federal regulators should investigate possible misrepresentations to investors, critics of the drilling plan said Tuesday.

Oceana, an environmental organization, and the Abrams Environmental Law Clinic at the University of Chicago Law School on Monday petitioned the Securities and Exchange Commission for an investigation into what the drilling critics call “material misstatements and omissions” in Shell’s financial filings. read more

Shell seeks injunction against Arctic drilling protesters

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Screen Shot 2015-04-02 at 14.48.11Shell seeks injunction against Arctic drilling protesters

By DAN JOLING – Associated Press – Tuesday, April 28, 2015

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) – A federal judge on Tuesday will consider a request by Royal Dutch Shell PLC for an injunction against illegal boarding of Arctic-bound drilling equipment by activists from Greenpeace Inc.

U.S. District Court Judge Sharon Gleason on April 11 granted Shell a restraining order to keep Greenpeace from entering a safety zone around a semi-submersible drill rig, the Polar Pioneer, and a heavy lift ship carrying it from Malaysia to Washington state.

Shell hopes to drill exploratory wells this summer in the Chukchi (chuk-CHEE’) Sea off Alaska’s northwest coast. read more

Oil Prices Decline Forces Royal Dutch Shell And Total To Postpone West Africa Offshore Projects

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Bidness Etc looks at Royal Dutch Shell and Total SA’s West Africa projects and why the projects are facing delays


The decline in global oil prices has led to a downturn in the energy industry, with oil companies being forced to take drastic steps to address the situation. One of the steps that they have had to carry out is announcing project delays. Hence, it comes as no surprise that Total SA (ADR) (NYSE:TOT) and Royal Dutch Shell plc (ADR) (NYSE:RDS.A) have put their West Africa offshore oil projects on hold for the time being, reports the Financial Times (FT).

However, one positive aspect of the delay in the two companies’ respective projects is that they will get time for contractors’ costs to come down. Large oil companies are eyeing the waters off the West-African coast as one of the key sources of crude oil production in the times to come, FT reports. The multi-billion dollar projects include Shell’s offshore Bonga South West project in Nigeria. Bonga South West is Nigeria’s first Deepwater Development that is over 1,000 meters deep. read more

Groups seek U.S. SEC probe of Shell Arctic drilling risk disclosures

Screen Shot 2015-03-02 at 19.49.45WASHINGTON, APRIL 28, 2015

(Reuters) – An environmental group and a law clinic petitioned the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to investigate whether Royal Dutch Shell has adequately disclosed to investors the risks of oil exploration in the harsh Arctic waters, the groups said on Tuesday.

The U.S. Interior Department is mulling whether Shell can drill test wells for crude and gas off Alaska this summer. The company abandoned exploratory drilling efforts in 2012, an accident-plagued season in a region with little infrastructure for emergency response. read more

Royal Dutch Shell Arctic Assessment Understated, Say Environmental Groups

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Royal Dutch Shell Arctic Assessment Understated, Say Environmental Groups

Bidness Etc discusses why environmental groups want Shell to reassess the risks for drilling in the Arctic, and that the previous report undermined the drilling risks involved


Major oil companies to safeguard themselves from the lower crude oil prices are cutting back on investments and spending. Royal Dutch Shell plc (ADR) (NYSE:RDS.A) is no different and is planning to undertake similar spending plans when it announces earnings on Thursday.

Cuts in capital spending are vital for Shell. Shell recently acquired BG Group plc (ADR) (OTCMKTS:BRGYY) for $70 billion. In addition, the company plans on spending $1 billion for drilling in the Alaskan Arctic. These investments mean that the company would need to make substantial cuts in order to sustain a favorable cash position. read more

Groups Want Review of Shell’s Arctic Regulatory Filings

Screen Shot 2015-04-02 at 14.53.31Article by Dan Joling of Associated Press published 28 April 2015 by ABC News

Groups Want Review of Shell’s Arctic Regulatory Filings

Two groups petitioned the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Monday for an investigation of Royal Dutch Shell PLC and what the groups call misstatements in regulatory filings regarding the risk of a catastrophic oil spill from Arctic offshore drilling.

The petition was filed Monday by Oceana and the Abrams Environmental Law Clinic at the University of Chicago Law School.

Mike LeVine, an attorney for Oceana, argued that Shell has not disclosed to investors that its response measures to a major or catastrophic spill are unlikely to work. read more

Shell Faces Pressure to Disclose Priorities

Article by JUSTIN SCHECK published April 28, 2015 by The Wall Street Journal

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Investors this week will seek answers on cost-cutting, BG deal, Arctic drilling

LONDON—When Royal Dutch Shell PLC reports quarterly earnings on Thursday, investors will be hoping for some detail on how the company plans to cut spending to weather today’s low oil prices—and simultaneously spend huge sums.

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Will Royal Dutch Shell Be Able To Successfully Integrate BG Group plc In Its Fold?

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Bidness Etc takes a look at challenge facing Shell as it incorporates BG Group in its fold

By: MICHEAL KAUFMANPublished: Apr 27, 2015 at 1:45 pm EST

Royal Dutch Shell plc (ADR) (NYSE: RDS.A) $70 billion acquisition of BG Group plc (ADR) (OTCMKTS: BRGYY) is a first of such magnitude for the Hague-based oil company. The energy company did not become part of the wave of merger activity that swept the energy industry, post-1998, after oil prices crashed.

Some of the big merger deals included the Total SA (NYSE:TOT) acquisition of Elf, Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX) merger with Texaco, BP plc (NYSE: BP) purchase of Amoco and Exxon’s acquisition of Mobil from Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM). Royal Dutch Shell’s competitors have had the experience of mega mergers, and they know from experience what the company goes through during and after the integration process. read more

UK warns off BP suitors now Shell unavailable as ‘white knight’


UK warns off BP suitors now Shell unavailable as ‘white knight’

(Reuters) – Britain’s warning to potential suitors of BP is a sign of the oil major’s vulnerability to a takeover bid and that a more politically palatable tie-up with Royal Dutch Shell no longer seems to be an option, banking and industry sources said.

Despite championing a laissez-faire policy towards takeover deals, Britain has always had a special interest in BP, dating back to the creation of the company via an unusual government investment master-minded by Winston Churchill. read more

Fracking lobby calls the tune on commission shale-gas panel


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2015 is a big year for climate in Europe: the UN talks in Paris, this December; the implementation of the EU’s 2030 climate targets; mapping out the Energy Union.
Judging by the European Commission’s public statements, one would think the EU was firmly on its way to transforming our energy system towards efficient and renewable energy.

But in reality, its recently-established advisory group for the evaluation of shale gas development is opening the back door to this harmful and polluting technology across Europe, despite massive public opposition. read more

UK government could step in to stop a BP takeover as rumours swirl off possible US interest in wake of Shell deal for BG Group

UK government could step in to stop a BP takeover as rumours swirl off possible US interest in wake of Shell deal for BG Group


The British government could step in to protect oil giant BP from any potential takeover amid rumours US groups ExxonMobil and Chevron could be interested in the firm.

BP became the target of takeover rumours following Royal Dutch Shell’s £47billion move to buy blue chip rival BG Group earlier this month.

The deal sparked speculation that a wave of other takeover deals would come for the sector following the tumbling oil price – which is down around 50 per cent since last summer – and the weak share prices of oil companies. read more

Shell Lobbied EU To Favour Gas Over Renewables – The Guardian

Screen Shot 2015-04-27 at 12.33.30Article by Joshua Warner published Monday 27April 2015 by Alliance News

PRESS: Shell Lobbied EU To Favour Gas Over Renewables – The Guardian

LONDON (Alliance News) – Royal Dutch Shell PLC successfully lobbied to undermine European renewable energy targets, in favour of the expanded use of gas, ahead of a key agreement on emissions cuts reached in October last year, according to newly released documents obtained by The Guardian newspaper.

Citing documents it received under the Freedom of Information Act, the newspaper said Shell began lobbying the then European Commission president, Jose Manuel Barroso, since 2011 to scrap the European Union’s formula for linking carbon-cutting goals with binding renewable energy laws. read more

BG Deal to Test Shell’s Integration Skills

Screen Shot 2015-04-08 at 08.12.04Article by JUSTIN SCHECK And SARAH KENT published April 26, 2015 by The Wall Street Journal

BG Deal to Test Shell’s Integration Skills

LONDON—With its $70 billion deal to buy BG Group PLC, Royal Dutch Shell PLC will attempt something altogether new for the 108-year-old energy giant: absorbing a huge company.

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UK government would oppose any takeover of BP says FT

Screen Shot 2015-04-09 at 00.19.50UK government would oppose any takeover of BP -FT

(Reuters) – Britain’s outgoing government has told BP Plc that it wants the company to remain a British industrial champion and it would oppose any takeover of the oil producer, the Financial Times reported.

The message follows the $70 billion deal to acquire rival producer BG by oil major Royal Dutch Shell, which has sparked speculation of a larger wave of consolidation similar to the one at the end of 1990s during another oil price decline.

British officials have said the government would be “sceptical” about any takeover – even if it involves Royal Dutch Shell – because it wants the country to have two big global oil companies, the FT reported. ( read more

Earnings slide at BP and Royal Dutch Shell as oil giants slash spending


Crude oil prices hit a 2015 high this month but it is not enough to prevent disastrous first quarter results from BP and Royal Dutch Shell this week.

The price of oil is still well below last summer’s highs of $115 a barrel at around $65 and BP and Shell will be forced into further cuts and sell-offs, experts have warned.

The two British oil giants have already cut spending for this year by up to 15 per cent.

BP is expected to reveal a 60 per cent drop in first quarter operating profit to £1.4billion, according to Société Générale. read more

Campaign to blacklist fossil fuel investments

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According to an article published by The Financial Times on 26 April 2015:

“The Prince of Wales is the most prominent name to emerge from a Financial Times’ survey of British individuals and institutions that are shunning coal, oil and gas company holdings.”

The FT article – PRINCE CHARLES SHUNS FOSSIL FUEL INVESTMENTS – lists some of the internationally famous institutions, foundations, charitable trusts and eminent individuals, including Prince Charles, who, because of climate change, have turned against investing in fossil fuel companies such as Shell. 

The article suggests that the escalating movement against fossil fuel companies is comparable to the global campaigns against apartheid in South Africa (in which Shell was a prime target after propping up the apartheid regime) and the tobacco companies.  read more

FT: UK government warns BP over potential takeover

An article by George Parker and Christopher Screen Shot 2015-04-26 at 18.35.06Adams published 26 April 2015 by The Financial Times

UK government warns BP over potential takeover

Amid wider consolidation in the energy sector, triggered by the sharp fall in oil prices, Downing Street has informed BP and senior City figures that it wants the group to remain a British industrial champion with global reach.


Screen Shot 2015-04-09 at 00.19.50RELATED FT ARTICLE

UK ministers make Gallic gesture to keep the British in BP

Downing Street has discreetly let it be known in the City that it would oppose any takeover of BP, the British company that was weakened after the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster five years ago this week. BP declined to comment. read more

Shell to suffer profits plunge on oil price collapse

Screen Shot 2015-04-26 at 16.23.08An article by Christopher Williams published 26 April 2015 by The Sunday Telegraph

Shell to suffer profits plunge on oil price collapse

Dutch earthquake fears also trim gas production

Shell is expected to reveal this week that the collapse in the price of oil has wiped off two thirds of its first quarter profits.

The giant has been hit hard by the economic and geopolitical forces set against the price of oil, which at $65 per barrel costs little more than half as much as it did last summer, in spite of recent gains.

Analysts at JP Morgan said Shell is expected to report profits of £1.6bn, adjusted for one-off charges, compared with £4.8bn for the first three months of last year, when Brent crude was comfortably above $100 per barrel. read more

Predators circle with BP still stuck in deep water

Screen Shot 2015-04-15 at 15.59.22By Nick Fletcher published Sunday 26 April 2015 by The Observer/Guardian

Predators circle with BP still stuck in deep water

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Meanwhile, BP could also be put on the spot about its commitment to being more open about its impact on climate change, after 98% of shareholders at its recent annual meeting called for more transparency. The company agreed to publish more information, but stepped back from providing targets to curb its own greenhouse gas output.


Shell takes hit of £3.2bn amid weak oil price as UK companies’ profit warnings go up

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Screen Shot 2015-01-12 at 08.45.23Shell is expected to report this week that the weak oil price wiped two-thirds off its earnings in the first three months of the year.

The Anglo-Dutch oil giant, which has tabled a £46billion cash-and-shares deal to buy British gas explorer BG Group, is poised to report profits falling to £1.6billion from £4.8billion for the same period last year.

The price of a barrel of Brent crude oil, the benchmark for the oil industry which is denominated in dollars, has fallen from $115 (£76.60) a barrel last summer to $64 on Friday. Other oil indices have fallen too. read more

Oil firms face further cuts as low prices linger

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Oil firms face further cuts as low prices linger

Commodities | Fri Apr 24, 2015 12:23pm BST

* Big oil using spending cuts to increase efficiency

* Q1 earnings set to drop by more than 50 pct, tracking oil price

* Strong refining margins set to continue

By Ron Bousso

LONDON, April 24 (Reuters) – Oil majors may need deeper cuts to oil and gas exploration and production spending as they grapple with an extended period of low crude prices.

The industry is expected to reveal another set of grim earnings for the first quarter when benchmark Brent prices averaged $55 a barrel, almost half the level of a year ago. read more


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From: THE OSSL COMPANY <[email protected]>

Date: 24 April 2015 07:29:29 BST

To: “Belmullet.DistrictOffice” <[email protected]>, “<[email protected]>” <[email protected]>, [email protected], Commissioner <[email protected]>

Subject: police alcohol DPP has Belmullet Policewoman investigating Belmullet delivery with a …view to prosecuting the Shell vendor who delivered the Shell / Garda joint venture alcohol . read more

U.S. Maps Pinpoint Earthquakes Linked to Quest for Oil and Gas

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Screen Shot 2015-04-24 at 07.46.46“Predicting risk is also hard, the report noted, because there is no scientific consensus on just how powerful such quakes can be. The report estimated the effects of shocks up to magnitudes 6 and 7, while noting that some scientists have speculated that the catastrophic 7.9-magnitude earthquake in China in 2008 was caused by human activity.”


The United States Geological Survey on Thursday released its first comprehensive assessment of the link between thousands of earthquakes and oil and gas operations, identifying and mapping 17 regions where quakes have occurred.

The report was the agency’s broadest statement yet on a danger that has grown along with the nation’s energy production.

By far the hardest-hit state, the report said, is Oklahoma, where earthquakes are hundreds of times more common than they were until a few years ago because of the disposal of wastewater left over from extracting fuels and from drilling wells by injecting water into the earth. But the report also mapped parts of eight other states, from Lake Erie to the Rocky Mountains, where that practice has caused quakes, and said most of them were at risk for more significant shaking in the future. read more

Royal Dutch Shell Oil Platform ‘Polar Pioneer’

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My name is Michael McNerney and I am retired Coast Guard having worked in Marine Safety. I’ve worked in the Puget Sound AOR and enjoyed working around the Maritime Environment and the ships that pass through.

I also take photo’s and this is just amazing to me to have this engineering marvel stop off in Port Angeles, WA awaiting its berth in Seattle’s Elliot Bay.

I thought that I would share a photo of your Platform in Port Angeles.

Michael McNerney


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Shell Sees Petrobras Emerging Stronger From Corruption Scandal

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Screen Shot 2015-04-08 at 08.12.04By Mario Sergio Lima and Rachel Gamarski published by 23 April 2015

Royal Dutch Shell Plc, poised to become Brazil’s biggest oil producer after Petroleo Brasileiro SA, said the state-run driller will emerge strengthened from a corruption scandal and the industry’s biggest debt load.

Speaking to reporters in Brasilia after meeting with President Dilma Rousseff, Chief Executive Officer Ben Van Beurden said Brazil probably will account for 20 percent of Shell’s output by the end of the decade after its planned $70 billion purchase of BG Group Plc. The Hague-based company would consider further growth opportunities in the country if they arise, he said. read more

Shell’s Brazil strategy factors in Petrobras scandal -CEO

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Screen Shot 2015-04-08 at 08.12.04Shell’s Brazil strategy factors in Petrobras scandal -CEO

Thu Apr 23, 2015 7:04pm BST

(Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell Plc has taken into account the risks presented by the Petrobras graft scandal to its expanding operations in Brazil and is confident the Brazilian state-run oil company will emerge stronger, Shell’s CEO said on Thursday.

Chief Executive Ben van Beurden said oil production from Brazil’s offshore subsalt region will remain profitable, and predicted that oil prices will rise from the low levels of the past six months.

Van Beurden briefed Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff for 1-1/2 hours on Thursday on his company’s operations in Brazil, where Shell is set to become the second-largest oil producer following its April 8 agreement to purchase rival BG Group. read more

Shell to lay off staff, contractors in Norway

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Shell to lay off staff, contractors in Norway

Thu Apr 23, 2015 3:29pm GMT

OSLO, April 23 (Reuters) – Oil producer Royal Dutch Shell will lay off 120 of its 900 workers in Norway and reduce its contractor force by 140 from 350, as low oil prices force it to cut costs, it said on Thursday.

Shell said 100 of the staff cuts would be at its headquarters in Stavanger on Norway’s west coast while 20 jobs would be eliminated at its operations department in Kristiansand.

Oil firms in Norway are expected to cut investments by around 15 percent this year, the industry’s lobby group predicted earlier. Spending could fall further in 2016 as energy firms hold back future developments after crude prices halved. read more

How The Majors Are Playing The Oil Price Slump

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Screen Shot 2015-02-01 at 14.48.37Article by Nick Cunningham published 22 April 2015 by

How The Majors Are Playing The Oil Price Slump

The largest oil and gas companies are employing different strategies to weather the downturn and plan for the future. Each strategy has its risks, and not all may work out. Which companies will emerge stronger after an oil price rebound and which will fall further behind because of bad decisions?

There are different ways to play a down cycle. With oil prices half of what they were in 2014, revenues are significantly lower for everyone across the board. As a result, the oil industry has collectively implemented an estimated $114 billion in spending cuts. But oil executives are also trying to figure out how to grow over the next five or ten years. read more

Shell Oil sued for allegedly firing woman on maternity leave

Screen Shot 2014-10-30 at 09.22.43By Annie Cosby: Published 31 March 2014 by The South East Texas Record

A Harris County woman is suing over claims her employment was unfairly terminated.

Nicole L. Ryder filed a lawsuit March 21 in the U.S. Court for the Southern District of Texas (Houston Division) against Shell Oil Co. and Shell Exploration & Production Co., citing violation of the Family and Medical Leave Act.

According to the complaint, Ryder began employment with Shell in June 2008.  In August 2011, Ryder entered a Restricted Cash Agreement to Serve with Shell.

“Under that Agreement, in exchange for a retention payment of $60,300 to be paid at the conclusion of the retention period, Ms. Ryder agreed to remain employed at Shell through July 31, 2013,” the suit states. read more

Shell, Exxon set the scene for future oil-price shock after $US114 billion cuts

Screen Shot 2015-01-02 at 23.58.26Article by Bradley Olson published 22 April 2015 by The Sydney Morning Herald

Shell, Exxon set the scene for future oil-price shock after $US114 billion cuts

As the oil patch grows accustomed to a new world of $US50 to $US60 crude, it’s now looking ahead to a different but equally daunting sort of cliff.

Oil companies are warning there will be a price to pay – a much higher price – for all the cost cutting being done today to cope with the collapse in the crude market. Big projects intended to start pumping oil and natural gas 5 to 10 years from now are being canceled or put on hold as the price crash forced $US114 billion in spending cuts on the industry. read more


Screen Shot 2015-04-13 at 16.04.38POSTING ON OUR SHELL BLOG BY “ANONYMOUS SOURCE”


I believe that high profile gaps in Andy’s broad scope of his roles & responsibilities (R&R), 12 years in the same role, (too long for a senior executive), loss of key sponsor(s), and the perceived need for a game changer that delivers on Ben’s strategy, new operational approach, and heavier (Treasury, M&A, Pensions, and governance) Finance footprint, might have been key in his departure.

Also, remember that Andy and Ben Van Burden come from very different backgrounds. Ben is a Shell homegrown senior leader (with 30+ years), while Andy is an experienced hire. Common knowledge is that the retention history for experienced hires senior leaders is poor at Shell. Why? My understanding is that because Shell is a relationship company, many experienced hires are unable to adequately fit in and build the mentor/sponsor /other relationships that are critical for success in the company. read more

Shell Pensioners Revolt

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By John Donovan

Trouble is brewing for Shell in the UK as Shell pensioners revolt against the proposed change of name of their association. The “Shell Pensioners’ Association” (SPA) is open to all Shell pensioners in the UK and arranges a raft of social and other events through its Branch network. It also publishes a quarterly magazine, “SPA News”.

With the latest edition comes an announcement of a plan to change the name of the Club to “Shell Pecten Association” – the rationale being that younger new Shell pensioners are put off joining the SPA because they don’t wish to be seen as pensioners! No evidence to support this claim is provided. read more

Whistleblower news relevant to Shell USA employees

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SEC Hits Back At KBR And Other Corporate Bullies Who Threaten Whistleblowers

By John Donovan

If a Shell employee, contractor or supplier wants to blow the whistle on alleged misdeeds, they can contact the Shell Global Helpline and risk retaliation, or go to the appropriate external authority.

In either event, there may be protection under whistleblower law in some countries, such as the USA. 

In this connection, an article published earlier this month by the IMA (Institute of Management Accountants) may be of interest. 

The SEC’s enforcement action, as set out in the article, is good news and should improve intelligence gathering. read more

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