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Tanzania Drafts $30B LNG Export Project Deal

Tanzania’s government has prepared a draft agreement with international oil companies willing to take part in a $30-billion LNG export project, and has sent the draft for ministerial review, local media reported on Wednesday, citing a senior official at the Ministry of Energy and Minerals.

State-run Tanzania Petroleum Development Corporation (TPDC) is partnering with ExxonMobil, Statoil, Ophir, and Shell in developing an LNG project that would allow the country to export gas from its offshore resources.

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Statoil joins Shell and other foreign companies exiting Canadian projects

Posted by Mark Young:15 Feb 2017

Norway’s oil and gas powerhouse Statoil ASA has finalised its exit from the Canadian oilsands and is by no means alone in a list of high-profile internationally-based operators to agree a sale of Canadian upstream assets during the past 12 months.

Statoil (Oslo:STL) is selling its interest in the Kai Kos Denseh project to Athabasca Oil Corp. (TSX:ATH) for an initial Cdn$578 million. Analysis of this transaction can be found here.

Other significant sales agreed upon in 2016 by non-Canadian companies include:

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Shell says renegotiating Permian JV with Anadarko

By Ron Bousso | LONDON

Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) and Anadarko Petroleum (APC.N) are renegotiating their five-year-old joint venture in the Permian shale basin in Texas, Shell Chief Financial Officer Simon Henry said on Thursday.

The 50-50 JV in the Delaware basin, which expires this year, will likely see the operatorship of the asset “consolidated in a different way”, Henry said in an earnings presentation to analysts.

Henry also said that Shell’s position in the Haynesville basin to the east of the Permian, which it acquired through its takeover of BG Group last year, “won’t necessarily stay in our portfolio.”

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Shell, Statoil make shortlist for US offshore wind licence

Written by Mark Lammey – 19/01/2017 6:00 am

The US Government said yesterday that it had cleared Shell and Statoil to bid for an offshore wind farm licence off North Carolina later this year.

The 122,405 acre Kitty Hawk licence will be offered in a commercial wind lease sale on March 16, the US Interior Department said yesterday.

Shell and Statoil are among nine companies to have made the shortlist.

Last month, Statoil said it had won an offshore wind lease off New York with a $42million bid.

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Shell ties in bonuses to reinforced emissions strategy

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By Ron Bousso and Karolin Schaps | LONDON

Royal Dutch Shell plans to link part of its executive bonuses to greenhouse gas emissions and conduct more active screening of future investments to further efforts to reduce the energy group’s carbon footprint, its CEO told Reuters.

The new initiative by the Anglo-Dutch group comes in response to mounting pressure from investors to adapt to an expected flattening in oil consumption within as little as five years and international plans to phase out fossil fuels by the end of the century to combat global warming.

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Norway oil and gas workers may strike, threatening UK gas supply

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Norway oil and gas workers may strike, threatening UK gas supply

Mon Oct 3, 2016

Workers at three onshore plants serving Norway’s oil and gas industry will strike from Oct. 7 unless they get a new wage deal, the SAFE labour union said on Monday, potentially threatening Britain’s natural gas supplies.

Some 338 workers at Statoil’s Melkoeya LNG plant, Shell’s Nyhamna natural gas processing plant and ExxonMobil’s Slagen refinery terminal would go on strike if talks on a new pay deal break down, the union said.

The Melkoeya plant turns gas from the Arctic Snoehvit field into liquefied natural gas (LNG) which is shipped worldwide, while Nyhamna supplies about 20 percent of Britain’s natural gas demand from the giant Ormen Lange field offshore Norway.

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Despite cuts, oil giants look to expand production

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Ben Chapman: 6 Sept 2016

Never mind the drop in crude prices, huge spending cuts and thousands of job losses, the world’s top oil and gas companies are set to produce more than ever for some time.

While top oil companies struggle with slumping revenues following a price rout after years of spectacular growth, their production has grown as projects sanctioned earlier in the decade come on line. Overall production at the world’s seven biggest oil and gas companies is set to rise by around 9 per cent between 2015 and 2018, according to analysts’ estimates.

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This Is Why Oil Firms Suffered Another Awful Earnings Season

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Screen Shot 2016-07-30 at 15.00.46BKatie Fehrenbacher: JULY 29, 2016

Analysts expected the oil giants’ cost cutting to help more.

Many of the world’s biggest oil companies continue to feel the pain as low oil prices continue to undercut profits and lead to shuttered projects and layoffs.

Exxon, Royal Dutch Shell, Statoil, BP, and Chevron announced dismal earnings this week, missing expectations and showing how slashing spending and pulling back isn’t yet enough in a world where oil has dropped from a high of $115-per-barrel in 2014 to a low of $27-per-barrel in January of this year.

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Royal Dutch Shell: Huge Dividend And Long-Term Growth Ahead

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Wayne Duggan: 20 July 2016

A number of British stocks have been hit hard since the referendum vote to leave the EU, but Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B) is not one of them. Shares are now up 0.3% since the Brexit vote after initially falling more than 8% during the knee-jerk market sell-off.

With the possibility that the Brexit could severely impact British GDP growth in coming years, RDS.B offers a unique opportunity to invest in a company within a sector that is in a global upswing, a company that has significant international exposure and a company that is committed to maintaining the single largest dividend payment in the MSCI World Index.

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Brexit impact fades

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Gary Shilling for Bloomberg View suggested oil could drop to $10.

By Ed Crooks: Friday, July 1, 2016

Oil was one of the markets where the initial shock of the UK’s Brexit vote quickly faded. Brent crude was about $51 per barrel as the voters went to the polls last week, and today was trading at about $49.50. 

The 34 per cent rise in oil so far in 2016 has been its best start to a year since 2009, and helped commodities outperform other asset classes over the past six months.

The rise in prices has brightened the mood in Texas, according to a new survey carried out by the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. It looks like being a good data source to watch in future.

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Oil Explorers Embrace the Sharing Economy to Drill Cheaper Wells

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Screen Shot 2016-06-07 at 23.34.38By Rakteem KatakeyJune 22, 2016 — 12:01 AM BST

The biggest oil-industry downturn in a generation has companies collaborating in ways they never thought possible.

In this global effort, one of the world’s most expensive oil regions intends to lead the way. Last month companies operating in the North Sea started pooling spare parts and tools, and they are even sharing plans on how to drill wells so they can work faster and cheaper, said Paul Goodfellow, Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s vice president for the U.K. and Ireland.

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This is a big change from oil’s boom, when costs weren’t such an issue as long as $100-a-barrel crude kept flowing. As companies focus on adapting to prices closer to $50 by making their spending less wasteful, they also aim to boost profitability for years to come by keeping costs low as markets recover.

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Exxon Investors Seek Assurance as Climate Shifts, Along With Attitudes

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By CLIFFORD KRAUSS and JOHN SCHWARTZA version of this article appears in print on May 24, 2016, on page A1 of the New York edition

HOUSTON — Exxon Mobil has been under pressure for over a year to explain its handling of climate change issues in the past. Now the company faces new pressure to explain its future, particularly how it will change in response to a warming world.

At the company’s planned annual meeting on Wednesday in Dallas, shareholders will vote on a resolution to prod Exxon Mobil to disclose the risks of climate change to its business.

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Green really is the new black as Big Oil gets a taste for renewables

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Terry MacalisterSaturday 21 May 2016

The world’s largest oil companies have in recent weeks announced a series of “green” investments – in wind farms, electric battery storage systems and carbon capture and storage (CCS). These unexpected moves come hot on the heels of revelations by Saudi Arabia, the world’s biggest crude exporter, that it plans to sell off parts of its national oil company and diversify its economy away from petroleum.

They also come in the aftermath of a United Nations climate change agreement and before annual general meetings for Shell and Exxon Mobil this week, meetings at which shareholders will demand that more be done to tackle climate change.

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Shell gets go ahead for Draugen wells

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Screen Shot 2016-04-20 at 13.50.03Written by Phil Allan – 02/05/2016 12:20 pm

Shell has received consent to use two subsea wells on the Draugen field in the Norwegian Sea.

Norway’s Petroleum Safety Authority has given Shell consent to commission the last two wells, designated G2 and G3 after the company began its programme to drill four subsea wells on the field in 2013. The first two came on stream in 2014.

The PSA consent also covers underwater equipment, subsea pumps and equipment on board the Draugen facility linked to these wells.

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Statoil Fuels and Retails wins EU okay for Shell deal

Screen Shot 2016-03-24 at 08.14.19Business | Wed Mar 23, 2016

Statoil Fuel and Retail gained European Union antitrust approval on Wednesday for its acquisition of Shell’s (RDSa.L) Danish retail and wholesale fuels business after agreeing to sell some businesses to allay competition concerns.

The European Commission had been concerned that the deal could have led to Danish consumers paying more for their fuel, diesel, gasoline and light heating oil.

Statoil Fuel and Retail, which operates in Denmark under the Statoil brand and is controlled by Canadian company Alimentation Couche-Tard (ATDb.TO), received the EU green light after pledging to sell 205 petrol stations and Shell’s commercial fuels business.

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Ex-Shell CEO joins Statoil’s board

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Van der Veer was the chief executive officer at Royal Dutch Shell from 2004-2009, when he retired. Van der Veer then continued as a non-executive director on the board of Shell until 2013. He started to work for Shell in 1971 and has experience within all sectors of the business. In addition, Van der Veer is the chair of the supervisory boards of ING Bank and Royal Philips Electronics and member of the supervisory board of Boskalis Westminster Groep, and has significant competence within corporate governance.

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As Big Oil shrinks, boards plot different paths out of crisis

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Screen Shot 2016-02-07 at 09.14.51* Companies seek to safeguard growth for when market recovers

* U.S. firms abandon deepwater projects for shale oil fields

* Britain’s BP bets on Egyptian gas, Shell on major acquisition

By Ron Bousso and Terry Wade

LONDON/HOUSTON, Feb 7 As oil and gas companies cut ever-deeper into the bone to weather their worst downturn in decades, boards have adopted contrasting strategies to lead them out of the crisis.

Crude prices have tumbled around 70 percent over the past 18 months to around $35 a barrel, leading to five of the world’s top oil companies reporting sharp declines in profits in recent days.

Executives at energy firms face a tough balancing act: they must cut spending to stay financially afloat while preserving the production infrastructure and capacity that will allow them to compete and grow when the market recovers.

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S&P downgrades Shell to A+/A-1; keeps door open to further downgrade

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Commodities | Mon Feb 1, 2016 9:28pm GMT

Credit ratings agency Standard and Poors on Monday downgraded oil major Royal Dutch Shell Plc to A+/A-1 from AA-/A-1+ and put its long-term credit rating on creditwatch negative citing sliding oil prices.

S&P said Shell’s one-notch downgrade, driven by weaker forecasts for its credit metrics over 2016-2018 and slower profit improvements, excluded the ratings impact of its BG Group Plc acquisition.

Shell had said it was prepared for a downgrade as a result of the BG deal.

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S&P cuts Shell’s credit rating amid oil rout

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1 FEBRUARY 2016

Standard & Poor’s sliced Royal Dutch Shell’s credit rating on Monday…

The New York-based ratings company lowered Shell’s rating by one notch to “A+” from “AA-” and said it may make more cuts in the future.

FULL ARTICLE

S&P Lowers Shell’s Rating, Puts Other Oil Majors on Watch

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Screen Shot 2015-11-20 at 08.55.47David Marino: Bloomberg.com:

1 February 2016

Standard & Poor’s lowered its rating on Royal Dutch Shell Plc and sees a significant likelihood of downgrades for several Europe-based integrated oil and gas majors in the next weeks.

“We lowered our ratings on Royal Dutch Shell Plc to ’A+/A-1’ from ’AA-/A-1+’ and placed the long-term rating on CreditWatch with negative implications,” S&P said in an e-mailed statement. “We also placed on CreditWatch negative our ratings on BP Plc, Eni SpA, Repsol S.A., Statoil ASA, Statoil Forsikring AS, Statoil US Holdings Inc., and Total S.A.”

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Oil Rout Prompts Moody’s to Consider Shell, Total for Downgrade

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Screen Shot 2016-01-22 at 12.08.33Moody’s will also review the ratings of two U.S. refining joint ventures linked to Shell, Motiva Enterprises LLC and Deer Park Refining LP.

By Mikael Holter and Rakteem Katakey: Bloomberg.com: 22 JAN 2016

Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Total SA and Statoil ASA, three of Europe’s biggest oil producers, were among more than 100 energy companies whose credit ratings were placed on review for possible downgrade by Moody’s Investors Service.

The reviews come after the rating company cut its oil-price forecasts and should for the most part be completed this quarter, Moody’s said in a statement on Friday. Prices may recover more slowly than companies expect and there is a risk they may fall further, it said.

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Ruairí McKiernan: Corrib gas protesters did State some service

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…many of those involved have been ridiculed, slandered, spied on, harassed, beaten and jailed – all for upholding their democratic right to peaceful dissent. Incidents included the 2005 jailing of the Rossport Five, who spent 94 days in prison at the behest of Shell.

Ruairí McKiernan

As gas is flared into the skies above north Mayo, it is worth reflecting on a project that has been one of modern Ireland’s greatest scandals, a stunning fiasco in planning, economics, environmental protection and the abuse of civil liberties.

Far from it being just about energy supply, jobs and development, the Corrib gas project cuts to the core of this republic and asks big questions about how the country is run.

For more than 10 years now, campaigners have attempted to highlight the project’s many flaws.

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Big Oil Let Off Hook

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Royal Dutch Shell Plc, BP Plc and Statoil ASA no longer face an European Union investigation into potential manipulation of fuel benchmarks, the regulator indicated on Monday. Photographer: Andrey Rudakov/Bloomberg

By Aoife WhiteStephanie BodoniPeter Levring and Gaspard Sebag: Bloomberg.com: 7 December 2015

  • EU’s Vestager shows willingness to dump cases going nowhere
  • Commission retreats from high-profile oil investigation

Days after dropping a high-profile probe into some of Wall Street’s top banks, the European Commission quietly sounded the retreat from an antitrust case that’s embroiled some of the world’s biggest oil producers since 2013.

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EU drops Shell, BP, Statoil from ethanol benchmark investigation

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Screen Shot 2015-12-07 at 20.10.17Reuters – Mon, 7 Dec 2015 17:58 GMT

By Philip Blenkinsop and Foo Yun Chee

BRUSSELS, Dec 7 (Reuters) – EU antitrust regulators have dropped Shell, BP, and Statoil from an investigation into suspected rigging of ethanol benchmarks, focusing instead on three producers of the biofuel.

The European Commission said on Monday it had opened a formal antitrust investigation into the actions of Spanish company Abengoa SA, Belgium’s Alcogroup SA and Lantmännen ek för of Sweden.

In April, EU antitrust regulators raided several bioenthanol companies and at the same time stepped up a two-year investigation into biofuel price benchmarks. In 2013, it searched the offices of BP, Shell and Statoil too.

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Oil Firms Dropped From EU Probe Into Fuel-Price Manipulation

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By Aoife White: December 7, 2015

  • Crude oil sector no longer under investigation in case

  • EU steps up case focusing on ethanol benchmarks rigging

Oil companies, including Royal Dutch Shell Plc, BP Plc and Statoil ASA, no longer face a European Union investigation into potential manipulation of crude oil benchmarks.

The European Commission “is currently not investigating further behaviors in price benchmarks for the crude oil sector,” Ricardo Cardoso, a spokesman for regulator said in an e-mail. He said the EU’s current probe focuses “on price benchmarks for the ethanol sector.”

Raids on Shell, BP, Statoil and price publisher Platts in May 2013 over suspected benchmark-rigging echoed probes into banks for trying to fix the London Interbank Offered Rate and foreign exchange markets. EU antitrust regulators levied 1.7 billion euros ($1.8 billion) in fines later that year over Libor manipulation.

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Shell to decide on Ormen Lange subsea compression in 2016

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Screen Shot 2015-09-17 at 07.55.40STAVANGER, NORWAY: Business News | Thu Nov 19, 2015

Shell plans to decide next year whether to resume installing subsea compressors at its giant Ormen Lange field offshore Norway, a company’s senior executive said on Thursday, after stopping the project last year to save costs.

“We still expect in the course of 2016 that we will get to a point where we can see whether we can sanction a good development there or not,” Mark Wildon, a vice-president at Shell Norway, told Reuters on the sidelines of an energy conference.

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Shell Oil Co. president touts carbon tax over piecemeal regulations

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Marvin Odum Shell Oil

Marvin Odum President Shell Oil Co

Posted on November 10, 2015 | By Jordan Blum

A carbon tax or cap-and-trade system in the U.S. — and globally — would serve the energy industry better than the current slate of piecemeal state and federal regulations, Shell Oil Co. President Marvin Odum  said Tuesday.

He acknowledged that Congress won’t take action soon in gridlocked Washington, but said that people should move beyond sound bites. Odum spoke at University of Houston’s energy symposium focusing on whether now is the right time for a carbon tax.

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BG Group profits drop as it nears merger with Shell

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By Jon Yeomans: 30 Oct 2015

BG Group, which is due to be taken over by Shell early next year, has reported a slump in profits as the low oil price continues to take a toll on producers.

Net income at the Reading-based company fell 63pc to $280m (£182m) in the third quarter from $759m a year earlier. Nonetheless, this beat expectations, with some analysts pencilling in a result closer to $200.5m.

Including impairments, disposals and foreign exchange movements caused by the falling value of the dollar, BG recorded a loss of £101m.

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Shell had to write-down some of its shale assets in the U.S., after spending $24 billion on a bet that failed to pay off, with company executives regretting ever having made the investment.

By James Stafford: Wed, 14 October 2015

A new report finds that the largest oil companies are set to cut spending on exploration by at least half, potentially leading to very few new oil discoveries in the years ahead.

The report from investment bank Tudor, Pickering, Hold & Co., and reported by Fuel Fix, estimates that exploration budgets among the oil majors will drop to $25 billion in 2016, down from $50 billion from just a few years ago. Obviously, low oil prices are taking their toll, forcing deep spending cuts in a desperate attempt to shore up profitability. But the cuts have large implications for the energy sector, increasing the chances that some large oil fields remain undeveloped for years.

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Shell, Statoil among energy companies forging climate advice group

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Screen Shot 2015-08-27 at 14.29.46Green Business | Thu Sep 24, 2015 

Representatives from energy companies including oil heavyweights Shell and Statoil have joined forces to advise on making cleaner energy decisions, the latest push by energy firms to become more pro-active on climate issues.

Shell Chairman Chad Holliday, Statoil Vice-President Bjorn Otto Sverdrup and RWE Chief Executive Peter Terium are among a list of commissioners acting in a personal capacity to advise governments on how to change their energy markets without damaging the environment.

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EU Said to Ramp Up Oil-Benchmarks Probe With Evidence Request

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Regulators may be moving toward sending antitrust complaint

Probe began two years ago with raids on BP, Shell and Statoil

By Gaspard Sebag and Javier Blas: BLOOMBERG.COM: 17 Sept 2015

Major oil companies including Royal Dutch Shell Plc and price publisher Platts were told by regulators to redact business secrets from documents obtained during antitrust raids in a sign the European Union may be moving ahead with a two-year-old probe, according to four people familiar with the investigation.

The redaction request could be a precursor to the European Commission sending a formal complaint, or statement of objections, to some of the firms, said the people who asked not to be named because the investigation into fuel-benchmark rigging isn’t public.

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Shell seeks permission to operate Corrib gas pipeline

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by Joe Leogue: Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Shell Ireland has officially applied to the Government for permission to operate the controversial pipeline from the Corrib gas field off the coast of Mayo.

The application is the first to be made under the Gas Act since the completion of its construction.

The pipeline is a joint venture by the Corrib Gas Partners which comprises Shell E&P Ireland Limited, Statoil, and Vermillion.

The application was sent to Minister for Communications, Energy, and Natural Resources Alex White on Tuesday, August 18.

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August Off To A Shaky Start For Oil Markets

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Screen Shot 2015-01-12 at 08.45.23By Evan Kelly: Tue, 04 August 2015

August started off on a dour note for crude oil, with prices tanking by around 5 percent on August 3. A slew of negative news from around the world weighed on prices. The Greek stock market plummeted on the first day of trading after being closed for five weeks. The Athens Index dropped by 16 percent on August 3 and continued its descent as of midday trading on August 4. Concerns over the Chinese economy once again reared their head as the government moved to put restrictions on short selling to stop the collapse of the stock markets. WTI fell below $46 per barrel and Brent briefly dipped below $50 per barrel before rebounding a bit on August 4.

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How the European Oil Industry Decided to Save the Climate

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By Javier Blas: June 23, 2015

By the time the convention chat turned into action, Royal Dutch Shell Plc, BP Plc, Total SA, Eni SpA, Statoil ASA and BG Group Plc published an unprecedented open letter on climate change. Breaking with their biggest U.S. competitors, they announced their support for efforts to put a cost on polluting, acknowledging they were on the wrong side of history.

“They have massively changed the rhetorical position,” says Charlie Kronick, senior climate adviser at Greenpeace in London. “They know that if you are not at the table, you could end up being lunch.

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European Big Oil Opens Schism on Climate With U.S. Rivals

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Article by Tara Patel and Javier Blas published 1 June 2015 by Bloomberg.com 

The heads of Europe’s largest oil and gas companies joined together for the first time to call for governments to agree on carbon pricing at a United Nations climate summit, opening a schism with their American rivals.

“It’s clear that the subject isn’t viewed in the same way on both sides of the Atlantic,” Total SA Chief Executive Officer Patrick Pouyanne, one of the signatories, said on Monday at a press conference in Paris. “We are working with those who come forward.”

The banding together on climate-change policy by BP Plc, Eni SpA, Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Statoil ASA, Total and BG Group Plc is unprecedented and follows comments by some of their CEOs calling for the industry to be part of the debate on a deal limiting greenhouse gases. It also highlights division within the sector as the top American companies, Exxon Mobil Corp. and Chevron Corp., decided to stay out of the European initiative.

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Shell and BP call for international carbon pricing deal

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Oil majors are pushing for scheme to limit emissions as they face growing criticism surrounding global warming

By Andrew Critchlow, Commodities editor: 01 Jun 2015

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Europe’s biggest oil companies, including Royal Dutch Shell and BP, have written an open letter calling for a binding global system of carbon trading in a bid to head off climate change critics.

In a joint statement, the chief executives of Shell, BP, Total, Eni, Statoil and BG Group said: “We need to meet greater energy demand with less CO2. We are ready to meet that challenge and we are prepared to play our part. We firmly believe that carbon pricing will discourage high carbon options and reduce uncertainty that will help stimulate investments in the right low carbon technologies and the right resources at the right pace.”

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Royal Dutch Shell, BP plc Seek UN Support Over Carbon Pricing

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By: MICHEAL KAUFMAN: Published: Jun 1, 2015

Major oil exploration and production companies in Europe are coming together to seek the United Nations’ support for the first time, in putting forward a plan that will apply brakes to global warming.

As pressure mounts on oil companies over concerns of climate change, company executives have moved to hold direct talks with government officials ahead of a UN meeting, scheduled to take place in December this year in Paris, the Financial Times (FT) reported on Sunday.

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Shell to Add Firepower to BG Assets in East Africa LNG Race

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Article by Paul Burkhardt published 12 May 2015 by Bloomberg.com

Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s $70 billion takeover of BG Group Plc will put Europe’s largest energy company in the middle of East Africa’s race to export natural gas and is set to boost the chances of Tanzania becoming a major supplier.

The acquisition would include stakes in three blocks off the coast that contain one-third of Tanzania’s estimated resource. This may give the East African nation an edge in the race to first exports of liquefied natural gas from the region over neighboring Mozambique, where discoveries could make it the world’s biggest producer of LNG after Qatar and Australia.

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BG staff must compete for jobs after Shell takeover, says boss Helge Lund

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By Andrew Critchlow, The Telegraph Commodities Editor: Article Published 9:53PM BST 10 May 2015

BG Group chief executive Helge Lund speaks exclusively to Andrew Critchlow about his plans to prepare the company for its mega takeover by Shell

When BG Group hired Helge Lund as the company’s new chief executive late last year it came at a high price.

Mr Lund – who had previously been head of the Norwegian state-oil giant Statoil – was handed a large remuneration package that, with bonuses, could be in the region of £25m. In return, he would take the top job at a company that appeared to be lurching from one crisis to another following the sudden departure of the previous chief, Chris Finlayson.

Under Mr Finlayson, who had been in the job for less than a year, BG had suffered a number of production issues and a profit warning just as the oil and gas industry was about to enter a deep downturn, with Brent crude prices plummeting to around $50 per barrel.

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US CLASS ACTION LAWSUIT AGAINST SHELL AND OTHERS FOR OIL PRICE FIXING

(NOW UPDATED WITH 98 PAGE DOCUMENT FILED 24 APRIL 2015 WITH THE U.S. COURTS)

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

SECOND AMENDED CONSOLIDATED CLASS ACTION COMPLAINT FILED 27 FEBRUARY 2015

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

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK

I. NATURE OF THE ACTION

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”).

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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

By: MICHEAL KAUFMANApr 28, 2015

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.

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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.

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Shell’s Huge Gas Bet Underscores Big Oil’s Push to Replace Coal

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Article by Javier Blas and Rakteem Katakey published 10 April 2015 by Bloomberg.com

BP Plc coined the slogan “Beyond Petroleum.” The new industry mantra might be “Beyond Oil and Into Gas.” Oh, and while we’re at it, “Down With Coal.”

Consider Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s recent $70 billion acquisition of BG Group Plc — clearly a huge bet that natural gas will prove to be its cash cow of the future.

The petroleum industry’s move toward gas is hardly new — the hydraulic fracturing shale revolution is in its second decade, after all. Still, Shell’s move is an emphatic confirmation that some among the Big Oil family firmly believe gas will play a growing role in meeting the energy demand of emerging countries such as China and India that are trying to move away from dirtier coal.

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Royal Dutch Shell And Others Interested In Iran Following Nuclear Deal Agreement

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By: MICHEAL KAUFMAN

Published: Apr 7, 2015 at 8:20 am EST

Iran’s oil exports are set for a boost after a framework nuclear agreement was reached between the country and world powers in Lausanne, Switzerland. The deal also paves the way for international energy groups to make a comeback to the country after a five year pause.

Western sanctions against Iran have badly hurt its oil and gas industry. The Iranian government now wants foreign investment to return and it’s expected that Tehran will start preparations for new contracts with western companies.

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UK Government must defend against big oil and mining dirty tricks

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Screen Shot 2015-03-24 at 16.05.44UK Government must defend against big oil and mining dirty tricks

Oil and mining bodies together with companies such as BP and Royal Dutch Shell have drafted industry compliance guidelines that weaken the impact of new UK anti-corruption laws.

21st March 2015

Anti-corruption campaigners urge the UK Government to divorce itself from industry guidelines that would create transparency black-holes

Oil and mining bodies together with companies such as BP and Royal Dutch Shell have drafted industry compliance guidelines that weaken the impact of new UK anti-corruption laws. (1) A coalition of over 800 organisations including Global Witness, CAFOD, Oxfam, Christian Aid and ONE are urging the Government to reject industry’s proposed guidelines which suggest that the law allows companies to keep certain payments secret. (2)

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Oil companies Arctic projects in deep freeze

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Information and graphic sourced from an FT article by Richard Milne in Oslo, Christopher Adams in London and Ed Crooks in New York, published 6 February 2015.

The first of two drilling rigs contracted by Shell will soon leave Singapore and once sea ice has sufficiently receded, will embark on a summer drilling project in U.S. Arctic waters, despite the objections of environmental activists. The Arctic is said to hold nearly a third of the world’s undiscovered gas and 13% of undiscovered oil.

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Arctic Oil On Life Support

Screen Shot 2014-08-06 at 09.25.26From an OilPrice.com article by Nick Cunningham published 1 Feb 2015 under the headline:

“Arctic Oil On LifeSupport”

Oil companies have eyed the Arctic for years. With an estimated 90 billion barrels of oil lying north of the Arctic Circle, the circumpolar north is arguably the last corner of the globe that is still almost entirely unexplored.

As drilling technology advances, conventional oil reserves become harder to find, and climate change contributes to melting sea ice, the Arctic has moved up on the list of priorities in oil company board rooms.

That had companies moving north – Royal Dutch Shell off the coast of Alaska, Statoil in the Norwegian Arctic, and ExxonMobil in conjunction with Russia’s Rosneft in the Russian far north.

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Oil companies throwing in the towel

Screen Shot 2015-01-12 at 08.45.23“Other companies – including Maersk, Cairn Energy (Scotland) and Shell (the Netherlands) – have postponed their plans for two years while they consider their options.”

From an article by CW published by the Copenhagen Post on 14 Jan 2015 under the headline:

Oil companies throwing in the towel in Greenland

Greenland’s dream of becoming the next oil mecca is fading. Three major energy companies – Statoil (Norway), GDF Suez (France) and Dong Energy (Denmark) – have given up plans to excavate oil in the ocean west of the world’s largest island.

Other companies – including Maersk, Cairn Energy (Scotland) and Shell (the Netherlands) – have postponed their plans for two years while they consider their options. Investing in oil excavation in Greenland is too expensive and uncertain, the oil companies contend.

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Arctic Explorers Retreat From Hostile Waters With Oil Prices Low

Screen Shot 2014-08-06 at 09.25.26From an article by Mikael Holter published 14 Jan 2015 by Bloomberg under the headline:

“Arctic Explorers Retreat From Hostile Waters With Oil Prices Low”

When Statoil ASA (STL) acquired the last of three licenses off Greenland’s west coast in January 2012, oil at more than $110 a barrel made exploring the iceberg-ridden waters an attractive proposition.

Less than two years later, the price of oil had been cut by almost half and Norway’s Statoil, the world’s most active offshore Arctic explorer in 2014, relinquished its interest in all three licenses in December without drilling a single well…

“At $50, it just doesn’t make sense,” James Henderson, a senior research fellow at the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies, said in a Jan. 12 phone interview. “Arctic exploration has almost certainly been significantly undermined for the rest of this decade.”

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Shell may abandon Arctic drilling indefinitely

Screen Shot 2014-12-19 at 15.36.47By John Donovan

Royal Dutch Shell is expected to announce by March if it will go forward with plans to drill for oil in Arctic waters offshore Alaska in 2015, a decision which may have more to do with the outcome of court cases and U.S. government reviews than global market fundamentals.

Shell’s decision is widely seen as a potential turning point for the company’s long-range Arctic plans, with billions already spent and rival companies putting their own Arctic drilling plans on hold; if Shell does not pursue drilling off north Alaska in 2015, it may abandon the region indefinitely.

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