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Costs tumble as Shell masters ‘budget’ deepwater drilling


  • LYNN COOK, SARAH KENT
  • The Australian
  • 12:00AM March 22, 2017

Royal Dutch Shell is trying to ­reinvent its business with a concept that sounds oxymoronic: budget deepwater drilling.

On the Mars oil platform, a hulking steel behemoth 200km southeast of New Orleans, more than 170 roughnecks and engineers are working to quickly wring more oil out of a massive field — and keep it profitable even if oil sinks to $US15 a barrel.

Shell, the world’s second-largest publicly traded energy company, is making a high-stakes bet that it can take highly efficient technology and processes per­fected onshore and deploy them in deep-sea production.

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Big Oil’s Plan to Buy Into the Shale Boom

by Javier Blas: 21 March 2017, 10:26 GMT

Big Oil is muscling in on shale country.

Exxon Mobil Corp., Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Chevron Corp., are jumping into American shale with gusto, planning to spend a combined $10 billion this year, up from next to nothing only a few years ago.

The giants are gaining a foothold in West Texas with such projects as Bongo 76-43, a well which is being drilled 10,000 feet beneath the table-flat, sage-scented desert, and which then extends horizontally for a mile, blasting through rock to capture light crude from the sprawling Permian Basin.

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Shell CEO’s plan for a smaller carbon footprint

Patti Domm: 9 March 2017

Royal Dutch Shell‘s announcement of the sale of $7.25 billion in Canadian oil sands assets Thursday is an important step to turning itself into a company of the future — with a broader mix of energy assets and a smaller carbon footprint.

Shell CEO Ben van Beurden said the company is committed to reshaping itself and believes that renewables and new energy will play a bigger role. The company is retaining just 10 percent of its Canadian sands assets.

“We are right in the middle of transforming the company into the company of the future,” he said at the CERAWeek conference in Houston, sponsored by IHS Markit.

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Shell accelerates plan to boost U.S. shale output -exec

* Shell to boost shale output by 140,000 bpoed by 2020

* Shell shale output profitable at average oil price $40/bbl

* Argentina shale development decision in 18 months

By Ron Bousso and Ernest Scheyder HOUSTON, March 7 (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell is ramping its North American shale output earlier than planned to lock in quick returns from what has become one of its most profitable businesses, the head of Shell’s unconventional energy business said. The Anglo-Dutch company plans to make shale oil and gas in the United States, Canada and Argentina a key engine of growth in the next decade, targeting output of around 500,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boepd), Greg Guidry told Reuters in an interview.

A drive to cut the cost of producing oil and gas from U.S. shale deposits has proven so effective that Shell has accelerated development plans, Guidry said on the sidelines of the CERAWeek industry conference in Houston.

It aims to boost output by 140,000 boepd over the next three years in the Permian basin in West Texas and the Duvernay region in Canada, said Guidry, an executive vice president.

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Shell And Penske Forge The Future Of Transport Alliances

PR Newswire: Shell And Penske Forge The Future Of Transport Alliances

HOUSTON, Feb. 24, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Shell and Penske Corporation announced today a multi-year continuation of their ongoing business, technical and motorsport alliance. As part of the agreement, Shell and Pennzoil will continue sponsoring Team Penske entries in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series and the Verizon IndyCar Series through the 2022 season and beyond. Shell and Pennzoil will also continue to be the preferred supplier of fuels, lubricants and related products to the Penske organization.

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Shell Edges Closer to Full Indoor EMV Deployment

CSP: Shell Edges Closer to Full Indoor EMV Deployment

Jackson Lewis: February 23, 2017

HOUSTON — More than 11,000 Shell-branded retail sites—or nearly 80%—are now fully indoor compliant with the Europay, MasterCard and Visa (EMV) payment standard, with the remainder expected to meet indoor compliance by spring 2017, Shell Oil Co. has announced.

As indoor EMV deployment nears completion, Shell looks to reach outdoor EMV compliance by the October 2020 liability shift date, and is moving forward with a pilot program planned for late 2017. The company said it plans to announce more details of its outdoor EMV program in second-quarter 2017.

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Shell and Toyota Partner on California Fueling Stations for Hydrogen Cars

By Craig Trudell , Yuki Hagiwara , and John Lippert

20 February 2017, 20:30 GMT: 21 February 2017, 00:21 GMT

Royal Dutch Shell Plc will build seven fueling stations for hydrogen cars in California through a partnership with Toyota Motor Corp., laying down their latest bet on the demise of the internal-combustion engine.

The stations will nudge the state closer to its goal of having 100 retail sites by 2024 where hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles can fill up. The California Energy Commission is considering $16.4 million in grants toward the stations, with Shell and Toyota contributing $11.4 million.

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Opposing views need to be heard

Timesonline.com: Opposing views need to be heard

The Times: Serving Beaver County, PA since 1874

By The Times Editorial Board

When Beaver County Commissioners Sandie Egley and Daniel Camp addressed a packed house Tuesday morning at the annual State of the County breakfast, the main topic on everyone’s mind was the Shell Chemicals Co. ethane cracker plant to be built in Potter Township.

Egley, when asked to describe the state of the county in one word, chose “exciting,” noting that everyone in the room knew what she meant.

Camp went with “radar,” saying that “Beaver County is on everybody’s radar” and that the area is going to become “the next up and coming place to raise a family.”

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Shell expects to split Motiva assets with Saudi Aramco in Q2

Mon Feb 6, 2017

HOUSTON Shell Oil Co, the U.S. unit of Royal Dutch Shell Plc, said on Monday it expects to divide the refineries and other assets of the Motiva Enterprises [MOTIV.UL] joint venture with co-owner Saudi Aramco in the second quarter of 2017.

“We are pleased with the progress we have made to date, and anticipate completion of the transaction in Q2 2017,” Shell spokesman Ray Fisher said in an email. “The April 1 date is a target that the internal project teams are working toward.”

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Shell nears deals to sell $5 bln of assets -CFO

By Karolin Schaps and Ron Bousso | LONDON

Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) is close to selling assets totaling $5 billion to cut debt following its acquisition of BG Group, the oil major said on Thursday as it reported its lowest full-year earnings in more than a decade.

Dealmaking in the oil and gas sector has been muted for more than two years due to collapsing oil prices, but as crude prices recover buyers and sellers are starting to agree on price tags.

For Shell, disposals of $3 billion in the fourth quarter helped shave $4.5 billion off its net debt and increase cashflow by 8 percent in the last three months of the year, Europe’s largest oil and gas company said.

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What Shell Could Unload Next As Part Of Its $30B Divestiture Program

By Claire Poole: CONTRIBUTOR: 31 JAN 2017

Royal Dutch Shell plc (NSYE:RDS.A) has been on a divestiture spree after its debt-laden $50 billion purchase of BG Group plc last year, the latest being its sale of some of its oil and gas properties in the North Sea to private equity-backed Chrysaor Holdings Ltd. for $3.8 billion as well as its stake in a Thailand field to Kuwait Petroleum Corp. for $900 million. The sales — which follow the recent unloading of assets in Saudi Arabia, Japan and Australia  – are nudging it toward 40% of the $30 billion divestiture goal it hopes to reach by the end of next year. What could be next?

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29 MORE reasons to sell BP plc and Royal Dutch Shell plc

By The Motley Fool  Jan 26, 2017

Those hoping that OPEC’s decision to finally curtail production at November’s Doha summit would go some way to balancing the oil market would no doubt have gasped at the latest US rig count data on Friday.

According to drill checkers Baker Hughes, the number of oil rigs up and running in the States rose by 29 during the seven days to January 20, taking the total to 551.

This was the largest one-week jump since April 2013 and means that the rig count has risen during 10 of the last 11 weeks. Meanwhile, the number of US rigs in operation now stands at a 14-month peak.

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Shell, Phillips 66 buy 6.4 mln bbls of oil from U.S. emergency reserve

Oil companies Shell and Phillips 66 together bought 6.4 million barrels of oil last week from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR), according to a Department of Energy document released on Tuesday.

Shell bought 6.2 million barrels of oil and Phillips 66 bought 200,000 barrels on Jan. 18, said the department document, seen by Reuters.

The federal government held the sale to fund a revamp of the emergency oil stash, which is stored in salt caverns in Louisiana and Texas along the Gulf Coast. The Department of Energy had said it would sell up to 8 million barrels as part of its modernization program.

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Ethane Production Is Still Climbing

CASEY JUNKINS: Business/Energy Writer: [email protected]

DILLES BOTTOM — U.S. ethane production is growing so fast that federal officials can barely keep track of it, as last year’s projection of 1.4 million barrels per day by 2017 is now trumped by new prognostications of 1.7 million daily barrels by 2018.

As the new U.S. Energy Information Administration numbers indicate, the need for drillers to disperse this liquid continues to climb, which leads Cal Dooley, president and CEO of the Washington, D.C.-based American Chemistry Council, to believe this creates an environment in which the need for ethane crackers grows.

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Potter Township gives final approval for Shell cracker plant

By Anya Litvak / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: 18 Jan 2017

Potter supervisors approved a permit Wednesday for Shell Chemical Appalachia to build a sprawling petrochemical complex within its borders, capping more than a month of tension among people who live near the plant site in Beaver County

The supervisors voted unanimously to approve a conditional use permit for the company during a standing-room-only meeting that saw both supporters and opponents speaking their minds in one-minute increments before the vote.

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Oil Major Shell Plans To Shrink As Oil Rebounds

By Nick Cunningham – Jan 03, 2017, 3:07 PM CST

Oil prices are rising and the industry is poised for a rebound, with U.S. shale spending set to soar in 2017. But for Royal Dutch Shell, this year will be much more mundane as years of high spending and ballooning deficits force the Anglo-Dutch oil major to retrench.

Even as the New Year promises to bring a sharp improvement in the finances of oil companies across the world, including Shell, not everyone will approach the rebound in the oil market in the same way. Smaller U.S. shale companies, with assets concentrated in some highly profitable areas such as the Permian, are planning to sharply increase spending and drilling. But the oil majors are less nimble, having assets diversified upstream and downstream, spread out across the globe. They were able to weather the oil price downturn better than their smaller peers, but they respond much more slowly to fluctuations in the oil market. That stability is a feature for many investors looking to avoid volatility, but it also means that 2017 may not bring much excitement from the majors.

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A devastating blow for Shell in U.S. Federal Court

See: Shell faces possible Dutch lawsuit over Nigerian activist’s execution

The Dutch Kiobel Case will allege that Netherlands-based Royal Dutch Shell and its predecessors were complicit in gross violations of civil liberties and human rights directed at Dr Kiobel and Esther Kiobel, including arbitrary detention and arrest; attempted rape; cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment; and violations of the right to a fair trial and the right to life.  (Extract from petition)

Esther Kiobel holds Shell responsible for the murder of her late husband, Ogoni leader Dr. Barinem Kiobel.

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Clovis wins $22 million against Shell Oil over toxic drinking water

BY ANDREA CASTILLO: DECEMBER 21, 2016 12:55 PM

The City of Clovis won its more than three-month civil trial against the chemical manufacturing giant Shell Oil Company over the cleanup of a toxic chemical found in drinking-water wells around the city of 108,000 people.

The chemical is 1, 2, 3-Trichloropropane, or TCP, which is a waste product from making plastic. TCP was in farm fumigants last used in the 1980s, which were injected into the ground to kill tiny worms called nematodes. A jury awarded the city nearly $22 million, finding that the Clovis residents were harmed by the design of the fumigant, that Shell did not prove the benefits of its product outweighed the risks and that those risks were known at the time it was sold.

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FLARING AT SHELL REFINERY PROMPTS HEALTH ALERT FROM CONTRA COSTA COUNTY HEALTH OFFICIALS

19 Dec 2016

MARTINEZ, CA. —Contra Costa Health Services is advising people to avoid the area around the Shell Refinery in Martinez this afternoon due to “excessive flaring and black smoke.”

The Health Services website issued the alert at 2:20 p.m. for the refinery at 3485 Pacheco Blvd.

People with respiratory conditions are being advised to take precautions and avoid the area.

The flaring is the result of a power outage, according to Health Services officials.

SOURCE

Shell donates $150,000 to CCBC

By Jared Stonesifer [email protected]: 19 Dec 2016

CENTER TWP. — Shell Chemicals Co. has donated $150,000 to the Community College of Beaver County to fund scholarships and help the college buy new equipment.

The money will go directly to CCBC’s process technology program, a curriculum created several years ago with Shell in mind. The associate degree program trains students for careers in manufacturing and industry, like the $6 billion ethane cracker plant Shell is planning to build in Potter Township.

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Shell Donates $100,000 to Capital Area United Way’s Flood Relief Fund

12/15/2016

Capital Area United Way was recently the recipient of a $100,000 donation from Shell-Geismar to go towards their Flood Relief Fund.   Shell and Motiva announced back in August that they would be contributing $500,000 to local organizations to assist with response and rebuilding efforts in the community.  Both companies also announced that they would match employee contributions made through their internal giving program.

“Shell is pleased to make this contribution in support of United Way’s effective response to the recent flooding in our region,” said Rhoman Hardy, General Manager at Shell Chemical Geismar. “We know that the agency’s efforts made a significant difference for many in the Greater Baton Rouge area whose lives were turned upside down as a result of this unprecedented disaster.”

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Trump stance could complicate Saudi/Shell deal

By RUSSELL GOLD: Dec. 16, 2016 2:45 p.m. ET

The election of Donald Trump threatens to complicate efforts by Saudi Arabia’s national oil company to purchase refineries and expand its petrochemical footprint in the U.S.

Speaking in Louisiana earlier this month, he said: “We use refineries from other countries. The whole thing is just crazy. It’s crazy.”

That stance could complicate a continuing deal: Saudi Aramco and Royal Dutch Shell PLC are in talks to end a joint venture called Motiva Enterprises. The Saudi company, which is state owned and state controlled, has said it expects after negotiations are concluded to own the 603,000-barrel-a-day refinery in Port Arthur, Texas. Shell is expected to get two smaller refineries in Louisiana.

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Shell leaves One Shell Plaza HQ after 45 years

Shell leaves One Shell Plaza HQ after 45 years

By Sebastian HerreraDecember 7, 2016

In the coming months, roughly 3,400 Shell Oil Co. employees will be moving from the oil giant’s downtown headquarters into its Energy Corridor campus as Shell looks to eventually house all of its Houston-based employees on the west side.

The move is indicative of an energy industry downturn in Houston that has led oil companies to slash thousands of jobs and consolidate office space to meditate costs.

Shell will leave its One Shell Plaza headquarters, a 50-story skyscraper, after 45 years.

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Echo’s of the Shell to Sea Campaign in Ireland 

By Jared Stonesifer [email protected]: 8 Dec 2016

POTTER TWP. — A petition with more than 750 signatures was presented to the township supervisors Wednesday night concerning objections to several aspects of Shell Chemicals’ ethane cracker plant project.

The move came one week before the Potter supervisors are set to vote on Shell’s conditional use application for the $6 billion project. The supervisors must approve the 200-page document before Shell is authorized to start construction on the plant, although construction isn’t expected until the end of next year.

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Leaner and meaner: U.S. shale greater threat to OPEC after oil price war

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By Catherine Ngai and Ernest Scheyder

NEW YORK/HOUSTON In a corner of the prolific Bakken shale play in North Dakota, oil companies can now pump crude at a price almost as low as that enjoyed by OPEC giants Iran and Iraq.

Until a few years ago it was unprofitable to produce oil from shale in the United States. The steep slide in costs could encourage more U.S. shale output if OPEC members cut supplies, undermining the producer group’s ability to boost prices. OPEC ministers meet Wednesday to weigh output cuts to end a two-year glut that has pressured global oil prices.

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Shell leases former Michael Baker headquarters

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screen-shot-2016-11-10-at-21-16-18Shell leases former Michael Baker headquarters

By Jared Stonesifer [email protected]

BRIGHTON TWP. — Shell Chemicals Co. has entered into a short-term lease of the old Michael Baker International headquarters on Dutch Ridge Road.

Shell spokesman Michael Marr said Wednesday the 76,000-square-foot building will be used to house employees during the five-year construction phase of a cracker plant in Potter Township. Those employees will be tasked with moving the site from a construction phase into an operational phase, Marr said.

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Does Shell have a secret growth business in the US?

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Philip Whiterow16 November 2016

Shell PLC (LON:RDSB) may be sitting on an undiscovered jewel with its onshore acreage in the US according to analysts at Deutsche Bank.

The German broker notes that prospects in the US Permian Basin are now changing hands for up to US$45 per acre, which puts a value of US$10bn on its 2bn barrel Delaware position.

That is three times Deutsche’s previous estimate, but rather than suggesting others in the industry were overpaying, as it had been, the broker concedes it may have missed a trick on the potential within Shell’s US tight oil assets.

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Trump’s victory could hurt Royal Dutch Shell plc’s future

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By The Motley Fool  Nov 14, 2016

Donald Trump’s views on climate change may provide a boost to oil production in the US. He stated in his campaign that the US was being disadvantaged by rules and regulations aimed to prevent (or at least slow down) climate change. This could signal a more positive attitude from the US government towards oil and gas companies over the medium term.

Although there’s no certainty that Trump will follow through on his campaign policies when he becomes President, it seems likely that he’ll be less positive about battling the effects of climate change than Barack Obama. This could be bad news for Shell(LSE: RDSB).

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Trump energised

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By Ed Crooks, November 11, 2016

“Between a battle lost and a battle won, the distance is immense and there stand empires,” said Napoleon. The same is true of elections.

Donald Trump may have come slightly behind Hillary Clinton in the popular vote for the presidency, but his convincing victory in the electoral college will give him the ability to reshape the energy industry in the US and around the world.

His hand will be strengthened by Republican control of Congress. Parts of Mr Trump’s agenda will face resistance in Congress, but his energy policy is unlikely to be one of those areas. His support for oil, gas and coal, his commitment to deregulation and his rejection of climate policy are all well aligned with mainstream Republican thinking.

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Royal Dutch Shell: The Comeback Is Here

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Alpha Investor: Sunday Nov 6, 2016

Summary

  • Shell posted a massive turnaround in its bottom line last quarter on the back of an improved production profile, lower costs, and higher price realizations.
  • Shell’s financial improvement is set to continue going forward as upstream oil price realizations will continue to improve on the back of a positive demand-supply environment in the oil industry.
  • Oil demand has exceeded supply by 500,000 bpd this year and the trend will continue as the likes of Russia, Saudi Arabia, and the U.S. continue to reduce output.
  • Shell’s focus on lowering both operating and capital costs will allow it to attain break-even point even if oil prices remain at $50/barrel, which will also improve cash flow.

On Tuesday last week, Royal Dutch Shell (NYSE:RDS.A) (NYSE:RDS.B) reported impressive results for the third quarter. In fact, Shell was able to achieve a major turnaround in its bottom line performance, posting a profit of $1.4 billion as compared to a huge loss of $6.1 billion in the same quarter last year. This impressive turnaround in Shell’s bottom line was a result of an increase in production as compared to the prior-year period, driven by the acquisition of BG that led to a favorable production mix in the upstream segment.

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Shell Says Traders’ Antitrust Claims Not Aided By Rulings

Royal Dutch Shell’s Q3 Earnings: Good, but Not As Great As Some Have Declared

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Tyler Crowe: (TMFDirtyBird): Nov 1, 2016

It seems that now when an oil company’s earnings increase, financial pundits say it “rocketed” upwards or some other hyperbole like that. Sure, Royal Dutch Shell’s (NYSE:RDS-A) (NYSE:RDS-B) third-quarter results were better than the past few quarters thanks to the BG Group deal, but the devil’s in the details. Let’s take a look at the company’s results and why they improved, as well as peek into Shell’s near-term future as 2017 comes into focus. 

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Gas station loses Shell branding after controversial pro-Trump sign

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Jessica Jaglois, WKRN: Published: October 29, 2016, 8:35 pm

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A Tennessee gas station that’s received national attention for a pro-Trump sign is now getting major backlash.

According to the owners of Lewis Country Store in Nashville, Shell Corporation ended its contract with them because of the sign.

The sign in question said “The only p**** Trump ever grabbed was Paul Ryan. #Trump that b****.”

As of Midnight Friday, Shell allegedly ended its contract with the store.

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‘We sold Shell as its dividend looks shaky’

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Shell’s acquisition of rival company BG is likely to hurt its finances, making its dividend look more uncertainCREDIT: ARND WIEGMANN

By Laura Suter28 OCTOBER 2016 • 8:59AM

Tom Walker, manager of the Martin Currie Global Portfolio, has 59pc of his fund’s assets in American companies. While he is concerned about the outcome of the election, he does not think a Trump win will necessarily be terrible for the American economy or for the companies he invests in.

Mr Walker, who has run the fund since its launch, tells Telegraph Money why he recently invested in one giant Chinese firm and why he cut Royal Dutch Shell from the portfolio.

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Royal Dutch conspired with the Nigerian government

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Esther Kiobel filed a briefin the Southern District of New York on October 12 seeking permission to issue subpoenas against Cravath, Swaine & Moore. The request was for the production of documents for a lawsuit expected to be filed in the Netherlands. The lawsuit is connected to a previous case in which Kiobel was a lead plaintiff, Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum. In this case, Kiobel alleged human rights and civil liberty violations against the oil and gas giant’s operations in Nigeria’s Ogoni region. The Dutch case, expected to be filed in late 2016, intends to allege that Royal Dutch conspired with the Nigerian government to commit human rights violations against the Ogoni people. Cravath represented Royal Dutch in the U.S lawsuits and this application intends to obtain the discovery from those cases.

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Shell faces possible Dutch lawsuit over Nigerian activist’s execution

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By Tom Bergin | LONDON

The widow of a Nigerian activist is planning to sue Royal Dutch Shell in the Dutch courts alleging the oil company was complicit in the execution of her husband by the Nigerian military in 1995, court documents filed in the United States last week show.

Esther Kiobel has filed an application in New York to secure documents from Shell’s U.S. lawyers, which she could use in the Dutch action.

The filings with the U.S. District Court for the Southern District Court of New York said she planned to begin that action before the end of the year.

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Royal Dutch Shell: The Turnaround Will Continue

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screen-shot-2016-10-06-at-13-11-55Alpha Investor: 12 October 2016

Summary

Royal Dutch Shell shares have received a boost in the past month on the back of an improvement in oil prices, a trend that is likely to continue.

There was excess oil demand of 500,000 bpd in the third quarter as against supply due to production cuts across the globe and robust demand, leading to an inventory correction.

Oil prices will rise further as Saudi Arabia, Russia, and the U.S. are all intent on reducing the industry oversupply, which will lead to further inventory declines.

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Shell Says Aluminum Ruling Helps Kill Oil Antitrust Claims

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Law360, New York (October 12, 2016, 9:50 PM EDT) — Two Royal Dutch Shell PLC affiliates accused of market manipulation told a New York federal court Wednesday that derivative traders lack standing to assert antitrust claims, citing another judge’s recent decision nixing claims in multidistrict litigation accusing Goldman Sachs & Co. and others of manipulating aluminum prices.

The Shell companies are part of multidistrict litigation accusing various oil companies of manipulating the price of North Sea Brent crude oil and Brent crude oil futures, by engaging in fraudulent physical trades and systematically submitting information about those…

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Crude realities for Bakken oil as Shell ditches W. Coast rail plan

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By Liz Hampton | HOUSTON

Oct 8 North Dakota oil producers were dealt another blow this week when Royal Dutch Shell said it would scrap plans to build an oil train terminal in Washington state that would have taken over 400,000 barrels per week of Bakken and other inland crudes.

Shell’s move on Thursday comes at a bad time for Bakken producers, who have endured a two-year price rout and need new routes to move their oil to coastal refineries.

Inland North American producers have seen four projects stymied since September, owing to both environmental opposition and an oversupplied global oil market that make it easier and cheaper to import cargoes than transport inland crude thousands of miles on railcars.

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Shell halts proposed oil-by-rail project near Anacortes

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By Seattle Times staffThe Associated Press: 6 October 2016

ANACORTES — Shell Puget Sound Refinery announced Thursday it has terminated plans for a proposed oil-by-rail project at its refinery in Washington state.

Under the plan, trains would have brought crude oil from the Bakken fields of North Dakota to replace some of the supply Shell gets from Alaska’s North Slope.

Refinery general manager Shirley Yap told the Skagit Valley Herald on Thursday that recent low oil prices and abundant production elsewhere have slowed Midwest production, making it less of a good investment.

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Shell To Pay $20M For False Calif. Oil Cleanup Claims

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screen-shot-2016-09-09-at-20-58-10Jody Godoy

Law360, New York (September 23, 2016, 4:53 PM EDT)

Shell Oil Co. has agreed to pay $20 million to settle claims by California’s water quality regulator and a whistleblower that the company had billed a state fund for cleanup work already covered by insurance proceeds, the agency said on Friday.

Shell will pay the State Water Resources Control Board $11.3 million to drop administrative proceedings over 100 claims to a cleanup fund for leaky underground storage tanks. The agency said Shell was able to get repaid through insurance or litigation, but had omitted that fact…

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Shell leaves literal and symbolic void downtown

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Next year will mark the end of an era as Royal Dutch Shell largely abandons its iconic tower and consolidates workers on the west side of town in its Woodcreek complex in the Energy Corridor and the Shell Technology Center a few miles south of Woodcreek. Only Shell’s energy trading team will remain downtown.

The move – largely to cut costs in the ongoing oil bust – continues the exodus of Big Oil from downtown Houston. Exxon Mobil moved out last year when it built its massive new campus by Spring. Of Houston’s 10 largest energy employers, just Chevron and CenterPoint Energy remain downtown.

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Shell says Norco, Louisiana chemical plant upset triggers flaring

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screen-shot-2016-09-09-at-20-58-10Thu Sep 22, 2016 | 5:53pm BST

Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSa.L) said flaring on Thursday at the Norco, Louisiana manufacturing complex shared with the Motiva Enterprises [MOTIV.UL] refinery was due to an upset in the company’s chemical plant.

The refinery and chemical plant share the safety flare system at the complex and when the flare goes off it is sometimes reported as being due to a malfunction at the refinery.

(Reporting by Erwin Seba; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)

SOURCE

Low oil forces Shell Houston reshuffle

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Written by Rita Brown – 21/09/2016 7:00 am

screen-shot-2016-09-09-at-20-58-10Shell has made plans to move the bulk of its staff out of its historic Houston base.

The company informed staff that more than 3,400 workers would be relocated from its base in the Houston Central Business District to its facilities on the west side of the city.

Shell’s base, known as One Shell Plaza, was completed in 1971. At the time it was the tallest tower in the city. A spokesperson confirmed that only staff in trading will remain at site, which makes up part of the downtown Houston skyline.

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Namesake tenant departing One Shell Plaza

screen-shot-2016-09-21-at-07-24-51The move will affect 3,400 employees when it takes place early next year as part of “an effort to meet the ever changing market conditions and optimize resources for future opportunities,” Shell said in a statement Tuesday. Employees will move to the company’s Woodcreek facility and Shell Technology Center on the west side of town.

Those who work for Shell’s downtown trading operations will stay put, although the company said it eventually plans to have all of its Houston-based staff in company-owned facilities on the west side.

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Will Saudi Aramco Be Able To Lay Its Hands On Houston Refinery?

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By Tsvetana Paraskova – Sep 14, 2016, 3:52 PM CDT

At a time when U.S. and Saudi relations are strained, the Saudi Arabian Oil Company is reportedly leading in a race to buy a large refinery in Houston.

Certainly, politics and geopolitics cannot stay out of such move by the Saudi company, but it seems that Aramco has solid business reasons, as well as political ones, to bid for the Houston Refinery, which Dutch chemicals company LyondellBasell Industries NV (NYSE:LYB) is reportedly putting up for sale.

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9th Circ. Rejects Shell’s Overcharges

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Friday, September 09, 2016

SAN FRANCISCO (CN) — Shell and others came a step closer Thursday to reimbursing Californians $200 million for overcharges during the 2000 electricity crisis, when the Ninth Circuit rejected their challenge.

Upholding a 2013 finding by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the appeals court cited “substantial evidence” that the power companies inflated electric rates by violating the FERC’s export tariff rules.

Power companies repeatedly got around regulators during the crisis, through bags of tricks, including “kilowatt washing”: claiming to buy electricity in California at regulated rates, then shipping it out of state, and repurchasing it at unregulated, emergency prices. Since electricity is simply a directed flow of electrons, and electrons cannot be traced, there was no way to prove whether the companies were doing that or not.

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Shell starts production at Stones in the Gulf of Mexico

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“Stones is the latest example of our leadership, capability, and knowledge which are key to profitably developing our global deep-water resources,” said Andy Brown, Upstream Director, Royal Dutch Shell.  “Our growing expertise in using such technologies in innovative ways will help us unlock more deep-water resources around the world.”

Stones, which is 100% owned and operated by Shell, is the company’s second producing field from the Lower Tertiary geologic frontier in the Gulf of Mexico, following the start-up of Perdido in 2010.

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Saudi Aramco-Motiva in lead to buy Lyondell’s Houston refinery: sources

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By Erwin Seba and Jessica Resnick-Ault | HOUSTON/NEW YORK

Saudi Aramco and its U.S. refining joint-venture Motiva Enterprises [MOTIV.UL] lead the race to buy LyondellBasell Industries Houston refinery, according to three sources familiar with the matter.

An announcement of the sale by Lyondell is expected this week, the sources said.

Lyondell spokesman Michael Waldron declined on Monday to discuss a sale of the refinery.

Reuters reported on Aug. 25 that Dutch chemical company Lyondell had retained Bank of America Merrill Lynch to help with a sale of the refinery.

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Shell Midstream Partners – Reliable Yield During The Downturn

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Shell Midstream Partners IPO – Bidness ECT

The Value Portfolio: Sept 2, 2016

Shell Midstream Partners (NYSE: SHLX) is a master-limited partnership formed by Royal Dutch Shell (NYSE: RDS.A) (NYSE: RDS.B). The company was formed for the purpose of purchasing midstream assets and renting them out for reliable fee-based income. This fee-based income provides investors with a secure dividend which currently amounts to more than 3% and has a strong history of growth.

Shell Midstream Partners has had a difficult time recently, though not as a difficult of a time as all the other oil companies. Since mid-2015, when other midstream companies such as Kinder Morgan (NYSE: KMI) began to take a big hit, Shell Midstream Partners has seen its stock price drop from almost $48 per unit to just over $30 per unit, a drop of almost 40%. This drop means that Shell Midstream Partners has seen its yield almost double to more than 3% per unit.

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