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Posts from ‘May, 2015’

Shell sought to influence direction of Science Museum climate programme

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“These emails reveal that the Science Museum is a significant cog in Shell’s propaganda machine…” 

Terry Macalister: Sunday 31 May 2015 

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“These emails reveal that the Science Museum is a significant cog in Shell’s propaganda machine,” said Chris Garrard, from the anti-oil sponsorship campaign group BP or not BP?

FULL ARTICLE

Big Oil seems to be acting like Big Tobacco

Article by Sheldon Whitehouse published Sunday 31 May 2015 by The Washington Post/Associated Press

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Fossil fuel companies and their allies are funding a massive and sophisticated campaign to mislead the American people about the environmental harm caused by carbon pollution. 

Their activities are often compared to those of Big Tobacco denying the health dangers of smoking. Big Tobacco’s denial scheme was ultimately found by a federal judge to have amounted to a racketeering enterprise.

The Big Tobacco playbook looked something like this: (1) pay scientists to produce studies defending your product; (2) develop an intricate web of PR experts and front groups to spread doubt about the real science; (3) relentlessly attack your opponents.

Thankfully, the government had a playbook, too: the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, or RICO. In 1999, the Justice Department filed a civil RICO lawsuit against the major tobacco companies and their associated industry groups, alleging that the companies “engaged in and executed — and continue to engage in and execute — a massive 50-year scheme to defraud the public, including consumers of cigarettes, in violation of RICO.”

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Opec under siege as Isil threatens world’s oil lifeline

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Opec under siege as Isil threatens world’s oil lifeline

By Andrew Critchlow: 30 May 2015

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Screen Shot 2015-05-30 at 23.22.28Thick black smoke rising from the Baiji oil refinery could be seen as a dirty smudge on the horizon as far away as Baghdad after fighters from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil) set fire to the enormous processing plant just over 100 miles north of the capital last week.

The decision to torch the refinery, which once produced around a third of Iraq’s domestic fuel supplies, was made as the insurgents prepared to pull out of Baiji, which they captured last June in a victory that sent shock waves across world oil markets.

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Shell-BG Group Deal Faces Hurdle From Chinese ‘Black Box’ Regulator

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By: MICHEAL KAUFMANPublished: May 29, 2015

Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s (ADR) (NYSE:RDS.A) deal to acquire the UK-based BG Group (OTCMKTS:BRGYY) that is already at a risk of facing numerous obstacles, including volatility in the crude oil prices and a risk of a competitor outbidding Shell’s bid.

Meanwhile, when the deal is already hovering around such sensitive issues, the Financial Times (FT) has reported the latest hurdle that might hinder the course of the deal. This one is considered to be the biggest of all hurdles, the entry of China’s Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM), termed as ‘black box’ by one of the competition lawyer, to conduct a regulatory scrutiny of the deal.

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Shell Has Got Its Climate Policy Wrong: Economist Nick Stern

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By: MICHEAL KAUFMANPublished: May 29, 2015 

At the Guardian Business debate on divestment in Kings Place, London, prominent Economist Nick Stern said that Royal Dutch Shell plc (ADR) (NYSE:RDS.A) wants investors to bet against the world taking action on climate change. He said that the oil giant and other hydrocarbon companies were pulling in the wrong direction, on the progress that will be made in renewable technology in the coming two-three decades.

He was of the view that despite hydrocarbon companies like Shell saying that the policies that will keep global warming to 2C will not be adhered to, they had to tell those energy companies that their forecasts were wrong. He said that they had to try to get the people to make sure that those policies will be implemented.

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Seattle says NO to Shell Oil

Extracts from an article by Megan Wallin published 29 May 2015 by TheBaltimore Post-Examiner under the headline:

Seattle says NO to Shell Oil

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The barge, given the name “The People’s Platform” is docked in protest of Shell’s oilrig.

Along the water, within view of famous seafood restaurants and expensive condos on Alki Beach in West Seattle, a large solar-powered barge waits with a message.

“Shell No,” one sign reads, with another parodying the drill’s name (Polar Pioneer) with its own dandy logo “Solar Pioneer.” Additionally, a short environmental film is projected on the screen at twilight.

The barge, given the name “The People’s Platform” is docked in protest of Shell’s oilrig.

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Gearing up for the big lift in the North Sea

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Extracts

How do you go about removing a massive piece of infrastructure from a hostile environment like the North Sea?

Oil giant Shell has come up with one answer which could be put to the test next year – using a mega-ship to remove the topside of an oil platform in a single lift.

The oil firm hopes Pioneering Spirit – originally called Pieter Schelte – will prove a game-changer by successfully removing the main structure in one go.

Allseas also has a contract from Shell to remove the topsides of two of the other three platforms in the field – Bravo and Alpha (along with Alpha’s steel jacket) – subject to consultation and UK government approval. It has an option to do the same with the fourth platform, Charlie.

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Could Shares In BP plc And Royal Dutch Shell Plc Collapse By More Than A Third?!

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By Royston Wild – Friday, 29 May, 2015

“In my opinion both stocks are in danger of a severe share price collapse as the oil market outlook becomes ever gloomier.”

Shares across much of the oil sector have received a massive fillip in recent months in line with a recovery in the crude oil price. After the Brent barometer shuttled from $115 per barrel last summer to multi-year lows around $45 in January, a subsequent reduction in the US rig count has underpinned a solid price recovery — indeed, the benchmark was recently trading around the $64 mark.

With investors hoping these measures will represent a sea-change in the oil market’s supply/demand dynamics from next year, shares in oil major BP (LSE: BP) (NYSE: BP.US) have flipped 10% higher since the turn of the year. Investor sentiment in Shell (LSE: RDSB) (NYSE: RDS-B.US) has wavered more recently, however, and the stock is now trading 11% lower from the close of 2014.

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Shell Elects Huibert Vigeveno To Lead BG Group Merger

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By: MICHEAL KAUFMANMay 29, 2015 

European oil giant Royal Dutch Shell Plc (ADR) (NYSE:RDS.A) has elected the head of its Chinese operations to lead the company’s planned merger with UK-based natural gas company, BG Group Plc (ADR) (OTCMKTS:BRGYY), as it seeks approval from regulatory authorities in several countries.

Earlier this week, the oil company told its senior executives that it has elected Huibert Vigeveno, executive chairman for Shell’s Chinese operations, to spearhead the deal with BG Group, according to a report by Sky News. Mr. Vigevena, who will hold the position of executive VP for integration, will see his appointment become effective in August.

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Arctic blowout clean-up costs could exceed Shell’s financial resources

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Screen Shot 2015-05-29 at 13.13.19From a regular contributor 

THE BEAR FACTS -EMERGENCY RESPONSE MAY TAKE TWO OR THREE MONTHS TO ARRIVE!

“The risk of a blowout or spill is always present when a well is drilled. The US government estimates the probability of such an event in Alaska at 75%. In many cases a relief well is the only way in which a blowout can be brought under control, especially if the well casing is breached. There is no “new technology” in existence that eliminates the risk of a blowout, or provides a guarantee that a blowout can be quickly brought under control if it occurs. 

The requirement for “same season” relief well capabilities is intended to avoid a situation where a blowout occurs late in the season and continues unabated until the weather improves sufficiently to undertake well control operations in the following year. The time required to mobilise a second rig, drill a relief well, and kill a blowout may be 2-3 months or more. The “same season” relief well requirement therefore effectively shortens the summer drilling season to just a few weeks. If this requirement is enforced, exploration and development of the Arctic will be almost impossible. If this requirement is not enforced and Shell has a blowout which continues through the winter, the clean-up costs may far exceed Shell’s financial resources. 

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Coast Guard Adds Response Vessels in Anticipation of Shell’s Arrival

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Screen Shot 2015-05-19 at 18.39.24By Emily Schwing, KUCB – Unalaska | May 28, 2015

Two 25-foot Coast Guard response boats arrived in Dutch Harbor this week. The boats will patrol waters off the coast of Dutch Harbor as oil giant Royal Dutch Shell moves forward with plans to explore for oil in the Arctic Ocean.

“This is very unusual, especially for Alaska,” said Lieutenant Aaron Renschler. He’s the Chief of Enforcement for the U.S. Coast Guard in Anchorage.

“We do deploy our assets around other parts of the state, but specifically for Dutch Harbor, this is the first time.”

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Federal Agency Dings Shell for Oil Rig Mishap in Arctic

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Screen Shot 2015-05-29 at 07.50.48Federal Agency Dings Shell for Oil Rig Mishap in Arctic

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — May 28, 2015: By DAN JOLING Associated Press

As Royal Dutch Shell PLC seeks permits for exploratory oil drilling off Alaska’s northwest coast, a federal agency has concluded the company underestimated risk the last time it moved drill rigs to Arctic waters.

A National Transportation Safety Board report issued Thursday said the probable cause of the grounding of the company’s mobile drilling vessel, the Kulluk, in 2012 was “Shell’s inadequate assessment of the risk for its planned tow” across the Gulf of Alaska.

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Oil industry rebuts proposed Arctic drilling mandates

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Oil industry rebuts proposed Arctic drilling mandates

May 28 2015, 18:58 ET | By: Carl Surran, SA News Editor

  • Oil companies and industry trade groups lash out against the Obama administration plan to require rigs and time to drill relief wells in case of emergencies at their operations in U.S. Arctic waters, claiming the proposed rules would shorten an already brief window for exploratory drilling while dramatically boosting the costs of the operations.
  • The group also says the proposal would lock in the “same-season relief well” requirement even though rapidly evolving technologies might be a better solution when companies lose control of an Arctic well.
  • Similar arguments were delivered today by Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B) and Statoil (NYSE:STO), which both hold active leases in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas north of Alaska; ConocoPhilllips (NYSE:COP), another leaseholder in the area, filed comments that are not yet available.
  • A key sticking point is the same-season relief well requirement – not just the proposed rules for it, but whether it should be allowed in the first place; Shell is asking the Interior Department to replace the requirement with a mandate that oil companies demonstrate they have “assets that can address a source-control event.”

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Federal Investigators Blame Shell for Alaska Drill-Ship Accident

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Federal Investigators Blame Shell for Alaska Drill-Ship Accident

By CASSANDRA SWEET: May 28, 2015 

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Federal investigators have blamed Royal Dutch Shell Plc and its contractors for the December 2012 shipwreck of a drill ship off the coast of Alaska.

FULL ARTICLE

NTSB blames Shell for wreck of oil drilling ship Kulluk in Gulf of Alaska

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Screen Shot 2015-05-28 at 23.27.03By Joel Connelly: 28 May 2015

The National Transportation Safety Board blames the 2012 grounding and wreck of Shell’s Arctic drilling rig Kulluk on the oil giant’s “inadequate assessment of the risk” of towing it across the Gulf of Alaska in a winter storm.

“No single error or mechanical failure led to this accident,” the NTSB said in findings released this month. “Rather, shortcomings in the design of a plan with an insufficient margin of safety allowed the accident to take place.

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Feds rap Shell for poor planning in botched tow of 2012 Arctic drilling rig

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By Jennifer A. Dlouhy: 28May 2015

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Geoff Merrell, superintendent of emergency response, Shell Alaska: Photo: Jennifer A. Dlouhy/The Houston Chronicle

WASHINGTON — The National Transportation Safety Board on Thursday blamed the grounding of Shell’s Kulluk drilling rig on the company’s failure to adequately assess the risks of towing the vessel across predictably stormy Alaska seas in 2012.

The independent federal agency’s findings, released Thursday, represent the third major government report on what went wrong when Shell Oil Co. and its contractors tried towing the Kulluk across Gulf of Alaska waters in December 2012 — only to have the rig run aground on Sitkalidak Island following a failed five-day fight to get control of it.

“No single error or mechanical failure led to this accident,” the NTSB said. “Rather, shortcomings in the design of a plan with an insufficient margin of safety allowed this accident to take place. The plan was created to move the (mobile offshore drilling unit) at a time of year with a known likelihood of severe weather conditions for reasons unrelated to operational safety.”

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Arctic drilling affects more than the Arctic, say Greenpeace campaign particpants

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Screen Shot 2015-05-24 at 15.17.42Eilís Quinn, Eye on the Arctic: May 28, 2015

Representatives from six of Canada’s First Nations are currently taking part in a Greenpeace campaign with a message that Arctic drilling has the potential to negatively  impact communities far beyond the North.

“We know that the ongoing use of oil as a source of fuel is perpetuating  global warming or climatic change which effects all citizens of North America, and the world, including my small little community,” said Candace Campo, a business owner from the Sechelt First Nation in the western Canadian province of British Columbia.

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Shell estimates one million hours of offshore work saved from Brent Delta move

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Written by Energy reporter – 28/05/2015

Shell said in February it would seek approval for the Pioneering Spirit, thought to be the largest ship ever built, to lift and remove the topside in one piece, shunning more traditional methods which involve cutting installations into smaller sections.

FULL ARTICLE

(THE SHIP BORN WITH A NAZI NAME – PIETER SCHELTE) 

Shell-Seattle feud takes new turn

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By Devin Henry – 05/28/15 10:26 AM EDT

Extracts

The federal government approved Shell’s plan to drill for oil and natural gas in the Arctic north of Alaska on May 11. Shell signed a deal with a Seattle company to use the port as home base for its drilling fleet, but local officials have tried to stop that from happening.

Last week, the state’s Department of Natural Resources sent Shell a letter telling them that mooring their drilling fleet in the port might violate the state’s constitution, according to the Post-Intelligencer.

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Shell Names China Boss To Key BG Merger Post

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Huibert Vigeveno is to lead the integration of FTSE-100 giants Shell and BG after their mega-merger, Sky News learns.

By Mark Kleinman, City Editor: Thursday 28 May 2015

The head of Royal Dutch Shell’s operations in China is to spearhead the oil major’s integration with BG Group as the industry’s biggest-ever takeover inches forward.

Sky News understands that Shell informed senior managers this week that it was naming Huibert Vigeveno, its executive chairman for China, as executive vice-president for integration, with the appointment due to take effect at the beginning of August.

The role being handed to Mr Vigeveno, a long-serving Shell executive, will be a crucial one.

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King County Tells Shell to Take Its Shit Elsewhere

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by Sydney Brownstone • May 27, 2015

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The Polar Pioneer’s shit has run into a snag with King County sewers.

A waste management company contracted by Shell applied for a permit to dump the Arctic drilling rig’s human excrement directly into a King County manhole. Today we learn that King County said “no.”

The county’s reasoning:

First off, Shell didn’t apply for the permit directly, and permits from third parties who aren’t the ones generating the waste are usually denied. Secondly, the contractor didn’t provide any data about the shit to King County’s industrial waste program. You’re supposed to test the shit, then send data about the shit to the regional officials. And that didn’t happen.

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Offshore decommissioning ‘a new beginning for North Sea industry’

Offshore decommissioning ‘a new beginning for North Sea industry’

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Brent Delta is among the most iconic platforms

By Ken Banks: BBC Scotland North East reporter

As a growing number of North Sea oil and gas fields head towards the end of their production lives, industry leaders are waking up to the challenges – and opportunities – that lie ahead. Hundreds of business figures attended a conference in Aberdeen this week to learn more about where the decommissioning process is heading.

There’s a growing realisation that offshore decommissioning is now really happening.

Over the next 25 years or so, the process of retiring North Sea oil and gas facilities could cost tens of billions of pounds, according to projections.

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Qatar threat to Royal Dutch Shell

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“My government will definitely not be happy… (Royal Dutch) Shell is one of the biggest single investors in the country and there are some $150 billion in infrastructure projects coming up in the next years…”: Qatar Airways CEO Screen Shot 2015-05-28 at 10.58.32

Al-Baker (above) said Qatar would take note if Qatar Airways was not awarded the extra slot it is seeking in order to fly seven days a week to and from Schiphol. (Reuters Photo)

In handing out lucrative public procurement contracts, Qatar is likely to favour countries whose airports grant take-off and landing slots to state-owned Qatar Airways, its chief executive said on Tuesday. The remarks by Akbar al-Baker, in Amsterdam to launch a new six-times-a-week route, may fan the protests of western carriers that Gulf competitors have unfair advantages because of their close relationships to their governments.

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OPEC Seen Backing Saudi Arabia’s Plan to Keep Supplies Elevated

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by Grant Smith and Maher Chmaytelli: Bloomberg.com: 27 May 2015

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When Saudi Arabia argues next week that OPEC should keep up production to fight the rise in U.S. shale oil, prices will be on its side.

Crude plunged for eight of nine weeks prior to the group’s November gathering, when the kingdom faced down opposition from the majority of fellow members, who advocated output reductions to tackle a global glut. With oil companies around the world cutting investment, U.S. output peaking and prices up, Saudi Arabia’s strategy will be extended at OPEC’s semiannual meeting on June 5, say Societe Generale SA and Bank of America Corp.

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Shell’s Arctic exploration safety audit ‘kept under wraps’

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by Joe Sandler Clarke: 22 May 2015

As Shell prepares to drill for oil in the Arctic this summer, a third party safety audit ordered by the US government to ensure there was no repeat of the company’s disastrous drilling operation in 2012 remains hidden from the public.

Shell contractor Noble pleaded guilty to eight environmental and maritime crimes after their last their last attempt to drill in the Arctic nearly caused a major environmental disaster. A heavy storm caused the 28,000 ton Kulluk rig to run aground.

As a result, the Obama administration stated the company would face unprecedented hurdles before it could drill again. The Interior Department made a third party safety audit a key recommendation of its report looking at the 2012 operation.

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We May Not See Arctic Oil For Decades

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Screen Shot 2015-05-19 at 18.39.24We May Not See Arctic Oil For Decades

SHELL MAY END UP WITH NOTHING

By Nick CunninghamPosted on Wed, 27 May 2015

Shell’s Arctic campaign this year will be pivotal. If the company cannot find large reserves of oil, it will likely set back Arctic oil development for a generation.

The Financial Times reported that Royal Dutch Shell will not see Arctic oil come online anytime soon, even in the best of scenarios. Even Shell officials think that the oil major will not be able to see Arctic oil hit the market until sometime in the 2030s.

Related: Shell Approval May Trigger Resource Race In The Arctic

There are a few reasons for this. Finding and developing offshore oil can typically take around a decade. First there is a long lead time before any drills hit the waters – analyzing data, purchasing acreage, planning, doing seismic surveys, getting permits, moving equipment into place, and finally deploying rigs. Shell first started buying up Arctic leases in 2007. After years of preparation (and huge setbacks), Shell has done most of this pre-drilling work.

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Alaska governor tours Shell rig in Seattle, touts Arctic drilling

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Screen Shot 2015-05-01 at 17.04.22Phuong Le | Associated Press: May 27, 2015

Alaska governor tours Shell rig in Seattle, touts Arctic drilling

SEATTLE — The governor of Alaska on Wednesday toured a massive oil drill rig parked on Seattle’s waterfront, then met with Washington state Gov. Jay Inslee to tell him that Washington’s position on future Arctic drilling will hurt the economy of Alaska.

Alaska Gov. Bill Walker met privately with Inslee at Auburn City Hall, south of Seattle. Inslee is a Democrat; Walker an independent.

Inslee spokeswoman Jaime Smith said the two governors didn’t talk about the dispute over the drill rig but generally discussed drilling in the Arctic, which Inslee opposes, she said.

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Shell faces what amounts to an almost existential crisis

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Analysts Downgrade Troubled Shell

Given Mornigstar’s view that long-term oil prices will be well below $100 going forward, we don’t believe Shell’s has a lasting competitive advantage over its peers

Stephen Simko, CFA 27 May, 2015

Shell (RDSB) faces what amounts to an almost existential crisis: even when oil prices were $100 its portfolio was strewn with problems. Huge bets on shale destroyed huge amounts of capital, cost overruns on key projects such as the Motiva refinery, and a chronically poor-performing downstream all combined to leave the company with very weak returns on capital.

We have recently lowered our Shell fair value estimate to £20.50 per share from £21 per share to reflect what we believe was an overpayment with respect to its planned acquisition of BG Group.

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Shell Polar Pioneer fails USCG inspection

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Screen Shot 2015-05-19 at 18.39.24By Donal Scully: 27 May 2015

Seattle: The Polar Pioneer, one of two huge drilling platforms Shell plans to deploy in the Arctic, came up short under a US Coast Guard (USCG) inspection on Tuesday.

Although the USCG said the unspecified hitch was minor and would be easily remedied it was another in an array of small snags surrounding Shell’s planned return to Arctic oil exploration after a three -year hiatus.

Two weeks ago the city of Seattle, where Shell is mooring its Arctic fleet ahead of the trip north, said that by housing Shell’s fleet the port of Seattle is in violation of its lease that designates Terminal 5 as a “cargo terminal.”

And the port of Seattle sent mixed signals when it simultaneously backed Shell’s right to moor its fleet but also requested the oil giant delay the arrival of the Polar Pioneer. That request fell on deaf ears.

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Arctic drilling invites disaster: Column

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Screen Shot 2015-05-19 at 18.39.24Arctic drilling invites disaster: Column

Nick Jans: EDT May 27, 2015

An oil spill in sea ice is permanent. And Shell is nowhere near prepared for summer drilling.

I stood on the shore of the Chukchi Sea, at the far northern rim of Alaska. On that late May evening, a maze of shifting ice spilled off to the horizon; a world of the same stretched beyond that, more than 1,000 miles to the North Pole. Out in that vast expanse, Inupiat whalers waited in traditional camps for their first bowhead whale of the season; polar bears roamed, hunting walrus and seals. Slanting in, the midnight sun cast mirages and colors that have no earthly name. I squinted into the distance and tried to imagine oil wells out there, too — dozens, and eventually hundreds, scattered across the face of this harsh but fragile ocean wilderness.

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Shell drilling may spur Arctic resource race

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Screen Shot 2015-05-19 at 18.39.24Colin Chilcoat, Oilprice.com: May 27, 2015

In a few short months Shell will (re)enter the Chukchi Sea, between Alaska and Russia. The oil and gas major still awaits approval from a number of state and federal agencies, but in early May the company received the consent of the Obama administration to explore the remote Arctic sea 70 miles off the coast of Alaska.

If it sounds familiar, that’s because it is. Shell was in the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas for much of 2012 – a stint that ended with more headaches than drilling. Following some high-profile failures with its Noble Discoverer and Kulluk rigs, Shell put its Arctic operations on pause in early 2013. Amid slumping profits, the group called off its 2014 plans to resume. Today, the economic indicators are not much better – Shell lost $1.1 billion in the Americas in the first quarter of 2015 – but the company is committed to moving forward.

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Oil Majors Falling Out Favor With This Hedgefund Boss

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Screen Shot 2014-12-22 at 21.08.35By Andy TullyPosted on Tue, 26 May 2015

Huge oil companies, among the largest businesses in the world, don’t excite hedge fund manager Jim Chanos because today they have to work harder and more inefficiently than ever to bring their products to market.

“[W]e’re just seeing that … these guys like Exxon and Chevron and Royal Dutch Shell are simply replacing $20 [per barrel] oil with $80 oil,” Chanos said May 24 on the PBS television program “Wall Street Week.” “So high return-on-capital businesses are becoming more mundane return-on-capital businesses.”

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Exxon, Hunt among companies approved to bid on drilling in Gulf of Mexico

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“Shell, the European oil giant, and Brazil’s national oil company Petrobras, both of which had initially explored pursuing drilling rights in Mexico, ultimately decided to pull their applications…”

By JAMES OSBORNE: Staff Writer: Published: 26 May 2015 

Exxon Mobil and Hunt Oil aren’t turning their backs on Mexico’s oil fields yet.

The North Texas-based oil companies were among 26 entities approved to bid on drilling rights in the shallow-water Gulf of Mexico off Veracruz, the Mexican government announced Monday.

Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto announced in 2013 that the country was opening its oil and natural gas fields to foreign companies for the first time in almost 80 years to try to revive lagging production. But enthusiasm has waned since last summer, as low crude prices threaten drilling projects worldwide.

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Shell’s Fatal Mistake In Buying BG Group?

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When Shell announced that it was planning to buy BG Group last month, opposition to the deal started to build immediately. 

By Rupert Hargreaves – Tuesday, 26 May, 2015

Extracts

I’m always on the lookout for companies that are not acting in the best interests of shareholders.

Indeed, as shareholders are ultimately owners of the businesses they invest in, management teams should, at all times, act in the best interests of shareholders.

But in many cases, management ignores this fundamental goal. 

And there are signs that Gulf Keystone Petroleum and Shell’s executives have made this fatal mistake.  

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No Shell Arctic Oil Until 2030’s

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By: MICHEAL KAUFMANPublished: May 26, 2015 

Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s (ADR) (NYSE:RDS.A) head of oil and gas production in Americas, Marvin Odum has told the Financial Times (FT) in an interview that the company’s Arctic drilling operations would take at least a decade to extract oil reserves, which would then be sent to production.

The leading executives dealing with this particular exploration project stated that there are enormous difficulties that the company is facing during the process of securing environmental approvals. Amid strong opposition from environmental groups, to obtain the needed approvals is taking longer than the expected time.

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Big Data In Big Oil: How Shell Uses Analytics To Drive Business Success

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By Bernard Marr:  26 May 2015

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The oil and gas industries are facing major challenges – the costs of extraction are rising and the turbulent state of international politics adds to the difficulties of exploration and drilling for new reserves. In the face of big problems, its key players are turning to Big Data in the hope of finding solutions to these pressing issues.

Big Data is the name used to describe the theory and practice of applying advanced computer analysis to the ever-growing amount of digital information that we can collect and store from the world around us. Over the last few years businesses in every industry have enthusiastically developed data-led strategies for overcoming problems and solving challenges, and the oil and gas industries are no different.

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Oil company bosses’ bonuses linked to $1tn spending on extracting fossil fuels

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Bosses at the world’s big five oil companies have been showered with bonus payouts linked to a $1tn (£650bn) crescendo of spending on fossil fuel exploration and extraction over nine years, according to Guardian analysis of company reports.

FULL ARTICLE

Chiara D’Angelo interview: Arctic activist who spent 66 hours suspended from anchor said nature inspired her to continue protest

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Screen Shot 2015-05-25 at 21.27.36ANDREW BUNCOMBENEW YORK: Monday 25 May 2015

Chiara D’Angelo interview: Arctic activist who spent 66 hours suspended from anchor said nature inspired her to continue protest

The activist who spent 66 hours suspended from the anchor of an oil exploration vessel has said she took strength during her protest from looking at the wildlife surrounding her.

Chiara D’Angelo attached herself on Friday evening to the anchor of the Arctic Challenger as it moored north of Seattle. The ship is among those that Royal Dutch Shell intend to use as they drill for oil in the Arctic Ocean off northwestern Alaska later this summer.

Ms D’Angelo ended her protest at around 9.30m. Speaking from the town of Bellingham, she told the The Independent that when she started the protest, she had no idea how long she would manage to remain suspended from the anchor.

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National Security, The Seattle Oil Rig, And Greenpeace’s Dirty Money

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By Ron Arnold, Executive Vice President, Center for the Defense of Free Enterprise: 25 May 2015

National Security, The Seattle Oil Rig, And Greenpeace’s Dirty Money

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President Obama had it all wrong in his commencement address at the United States Coast Guard Academy in New London, Connecticut. He warned that climate change “deniers” endanger our national security – denying “undermines the readiness of our forces.”

In fact, climate change believers are the threat to our national security, such as the recently notorious Seattle mob of Greenpeace “kayaktivists” paddling around Puget Sound trying to stop Polar Pioneer, Shell Oil’s Arctic drilling rig, from making a layover at the Port of Seattle to gear up for Alaskan waters. When thwarted by the Coast Guard’s 500-foot no-approach cordon, the Greenpeace canoe crowd left the harbor and took to the streets where they blocked supplier access to the rig until city police dispersed them.

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Shell’s Arctic extraction to take decades before oil flows

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Marvin Odum, Shell’s head of oil and gas production in the Americas, told the Financial Times that the company’s success or failure this year and next in making a significant discovery was critical for the future of Arctic oil development.

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FULL FT ARTICLE WITH WORKING LINKS.

WARNS THAT PRODUCTION IS UNLIKELY TO COMMENCE UNTIL THE “2030s”

Shell to drill in Alaskan Arctic with protesters in pursuit

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Ten years after it first started acquiring new leases in the Arctic, and having spent almost $7bn, Shell has still not yet drilled a single well into oil-bearing rocks. A series of law suits, regulatory objections and its own mistakes have held it up.

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FULL FT ARTICLE WITH WORKING LINKS. SETS OUT SHELL’S 2012 DEBACLE IN SOME DETAIL

RELATED FT ARTICLES

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Fuel crisis worsens Nigeria’s power problems

WE UNDERSTAND FROM INSIDER SOURCES THAT THE INTERNAL NIGERIAN FUEL CRISIS DESCRIBED IN THIS PUNCH ARTICLE IS SEVERELY AFFECTING SHELL OPERATIONS, WITH POWER CUTS AND A LACK OF FUEL FOR VEHICLES.

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MAY 25, 2015 : AKINPELU DADA, STANLEY OPARA, FEMI ASU AND GODWIN ISENYO 

The current nationwide scarcity of refined petroleum products has reached a crisis point with a litre of petrol selling for between N200 and N600 in many parts of the country, while diesel, household kerosene and liquefied natural gas have also become elusive.

Also, with power generation dropping to an all-time low of 1,327 megawatts, most Nigerian households are now living without electricity as they have also run out of fuel to power their generators.

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Ann Pickard, Shell VP for Arctic drilling, is not a safe pair of hands

Screen Shot 2015-05-19 at 18.39.24“Having got its corporate fingers burnt once already, it is simply astonishing that the fate of Shell’s resurrected Arctic drilling campaign is being entrusted by Shell and President Obama to such an incompetent, unscrupulous individual, as Ann Pickard.”

Screen Shot 2015-05-24 at 16.03.38By John Donovan

Ann Pickard replaced David Lawrence as Shell VP for the Arctic after Shell’s 2012 disastrous Arctic drilling fiasco, aptly described by the then U.S. Interior Secretary, Ken Salazar, as a Screw Up.

Lawrence of Alaska, the chosen fall guy, was fired.

Ann Pickard is now being presented as being a safe pair of hands.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

When she was a senior Royal Dutch Shell executive in Africa, Ann Pickard boasted to the U.S. Ambassador Robin Sanders that Shell had infiltrated spies into key positions throughout Nigerian government ministries and knew everything that was going on.

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Pair Chains Themselves to Shell Ship Near Seattle to Protest Arctic Drilling

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Screen Shot 2015-05-24 at 15.17.42BELLINGHAM, Wash. — Two people have chained themselves to a support ship that is part of Royal Dutch Shell’s exploratory oil drilling plans and currently moored in Washington state.

Eric Ross of the Backbone Campaign said on Saturday morning that Matt Fuller joined student activist Chiara Rose in suspending themselves from the anchor chain of the Arctic Challenger, which is in Bellingham Bay.

Rose suspended herself from the ship with a climbing harness on Friday night in protest to Shell’s plan for Arctic drilling.

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Shell Shielded from Defamation Claim for Statements in Internal Investigation Reports

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Friday, May 22, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-05-13 at 21.47.32Last week, the Texas Supreme Court joined the majority of jurisdictions in holding that a company enjoys an absolute privilege when providing the Department of Justice (DOJ) with an internal investigation report containing statements later alleged by an employee to be defamatory.

The decision in Shell Oil Co. v. Writt, __S.W.3d__ (Tex. 2015) should provide Texas companies comfort that cooperating with regulatory and law enforcement agencies will not expose them to liability for defamation.

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Chief of Shell’s Arctic drilling program searches for ‘the prize’

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Screen Shot 2015-05-19 at 18.39.24By Hal Bernton and Coral GarnickSeattle Times staff reporters: Published 23 May 2015

Chief of Shell’s Arctic drilling program searches for ‘the prize’

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(Ann Pickard, Shell’s executive vice president for the Arctic)

Shell’s Ann Pickard says an offshore oil find in the remote Chukchi Sea could eventually yield 1 million barrels of oil daily, and she insists the company has learned from its messy Arctic exploration effort in 2012.

In a brief summer drilling season off Alaska’s Arctic shore, Shell’s Ann Pickard is on the hunt for a giant oil field, and she thinks she knows where to find it.

All of the vessels in the Arctic exploration fleet now gathering in Puget Sound will be headed to a spot in the Chukchi Sea where Shell first drilled in 1989 and 1990. At that site, called the Burger Prospect, the company found natural gas that Pickard hopes is sitting on top of the oil Shell seeks.

“We are going to focus on what I call the prize, and the prize to me is Burger,” said Pickard, Shell’s executive vice president for the Arctic. “If Burger works, then it opens up the whole area.”

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Activists damage habitat in Seattle bay during Shell oil protests

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SEATTLE | BY ERIC M. JOHNSON: World | Sat May 23, 2015 2:00am BST

Activists damage habitat in Seattle bay during Shell oil protests

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Photo Credit: REUTERS/JASON REDMOND

Environmental activists who fanned out in small boats across a Seattle bay over the weekend in a protest over Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L)’s plans for Arctic oil exploration in the have damaged “precious habitat” on the sea floor, a state official said on Friday.

Cables used to moor a 4,000 square foot (370 square metre) floating barge dubbed “The People’s Platform” to the floor of Elliott Bay became wrapped around an old steel piling and pulled it over, disturbing aquatic habitat, Department of Natural Resources spokesman Joe Smillie said.

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U.S. Senators urge Obama administration to block Arctic oil drilling

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Screen Shot 2015-05-19 at 18.39.24Politics | Fri May 22, 2015 

U.S. Senators urge Obama administration to block Arctic oil drilling

When Shell lost control of a drilling rig that year it “put numerous lives at risk, including those of the Coast Guard crews” and those of 18 people on the rig…

A group of 18 mostly Democratic U.S. senators on Friday urged the Obama administration to stop Royal Dutch Shell’s preparations for oil exploration in the Arctic, saying the region has a severely limited capacity to respond to accidents.

The senators, from both coasts and several Midwestern states, sent a letter to Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, urging her to retire Arctic leases in the Chukchi Sea.

Jewell’s department earlier this month conditionally approved Shell’s exploration plan in the Arctic. The move means the company is likely to return to the Chukchi Sea this summer for the first time since a mishap-filled drilling season in 2012.

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Shell CEO backs fossil fuels, climate change warnings -Guardian

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Screen Shot 2015-05-22 at 21.49.34Markets | Fri May 22, 2015 7:35pm EDT

Shell CEO backs fossil fuels, climate change warnings -Guardian

The world’s fossil fuel reserves cannot be burned unless some way is found to capture their carbon emissions, Royal Dutch Shell Plc Chief Executive Officer Ben van Beurden said on Friday.

In an interview published in Britain’s Guardian newspaper, Van Beurden forecast that global energy use would produce “zero carbon” by the end of the century, and that his group would get a “very large segment” of its earnings from renewable power.

The interview came a day after Van Beurden slammed as a “red herring” calls to divest from energy companies as part of the fight against climate change, in particular the “Keep it in the Ground” campaign led by the Guardian.

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Woman chains herself to anchor of Shell support ship in Bellingham

MAY 22, 2015, BY Q13 FOX NEWS STAFF

Woman chains herself to anchor of Shell support ship in Bellingham

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A woman has chained herself to an anchor of a Shell support ship in Bellingham Bay, Bellingham police say. She can be seen at left.

BELLINGHAM — A woman has chained herself to the Arctic Challenger, a support ship for Shell Oil’s drill rig, in Bellingham Bay, the Bellingham Police Department confirmed Friday night.

She has been identified as Chiara Rose, a Western Washington University student.

“We have spoken with the ship, the Port and the female and will not be taking action to remove her,” a police spokesman said. “The ship is not leaving for several days and we will not risk resources or the female.”

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