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Posts on ‘March 26th, 2008’

Financial Times: Nigerian ministers sacked in graft probe

By Matthew Green in Lagos
Published: March 26 2008 17:11 | Last updated: March 26 2008 17:11

Umaru Yar’Adua, Nigeria’s president, has sacked two ministers on suspicion of stealing public funds, a sign he is adopting a more assertive style after surviving a legal challenge last month to his election victory.

The ministers were the first to be forced out since Mr Yar’Adua appointed his cabinet in July, three months after winning elections so badly flawed that many Nigerians believed they barely merited the name. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

Financial Times: Shell hopes for sweet smell of success

By Ed Crooks
Published: March 26 2008 21:58 | Last updated: March 26 2008 21:58

Royal Dutch Shell is working on a process to turn sugars into a synthetic petrol, rather than ethanol, with the aim of moving to a commercial demonstration plant in two years’ time.

Europe’s biggest oil company on Wednesday announced a joint venture with Virent, a US biotech business based in Wisconsin, saying that results from early research over the past year had been better than expected in terms of costs and yields. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

MOVEMENT FOR THE SURVIVAL OF THE OGONI PEOPLE

COMMUNICATION FROM THE PRESIDENT OF MOSOP-USA

(MOSOP-USA)

P.O. Box 607113
Chicago, Illinois 60660   
Tel: 773. 262. 6869
E-mail: [email protected] 
 
From the President’s desk

March 22, 2008

SHELL AGAIN?

Fellow Ogonis and Supporters of the Ogoni Cause,

I salute you!

Few weeks back we were jolted by the news of Shell’s purported return to operation in our land, Ogoni. It made major headlines in Nigerian national dailies. At the same time, we saw a rebuttal to Shell’s claims from the Rivers State government, with a shift in burden of proof on the issue to the federal government. Thereafter, Shell reconstructed and concentrated its argument on two fronts: that it has only come into Ogoniland not to resume operation but to “secure dormant wells” and that this exercise came on the heels of “immediate past administration” permission. Really? read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

The Times: No change in Moscow as BP is targeted

March 26, 2008
Patrick Hosking: Business commentary

It’s hard to know the precise motivation for the targeting of BP’s joint venture TNK-BP by the Russian authorities, but the idea that the events of the past few weeks are all coincidental stretches credulity. First an employee is accused of industrial espionage; then an environmental investigation is launched; then the tax authorities raid its premises; now there’s a problem over visas for technical staff. There are echoes here of the menacing of British Council employees in Russia earlier this year. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

The Times: BP suspends 148 workers over visa dispute with Russia

March 26, 2008
Robin Pagnamenta and Tony Halpin in Moscow

BP’s problems in Russia escalated yesterday after the oil giant was forced to suspend 148 employees seconded to TNK-BP, its Moscow-based joint venture, after a dispute over visas.

Fears that BP had become the latest victim of an ongoing power struggle between the Kremlin and Western energy groups were compounded when the Russian Interior Ministry said that it had launched a criminal investigation into allegations of “large-scale tax evasion” at a former unit of TNK-BP. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: Shell Investigated for Corruption By Department of Justice, SEC

The Wall Street Journal Home Page

Shell Investigated for Corruption 

By Department of Justice, SEC

By BENOIT FAUCON

March 26, 2008 3:52 p.m.

LONDON — The U.S. Department of Justice is examining corruption allegations in the use of a freight-forwarding firm by Royal Dutch Shell PLC, the company said in regulatory filing published last week.

A probe by the Securities and Exchange Commission is also under way, it said.

In its annual report with the SEC, the Anglo-Dutch oil company said it was contacted in July by the Department of Justice regarding its use of a unit of Panalpina World Transport Ltd., a Swiss-based shipping and logistics-management company. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

Toronto Globe and Mail: Why aren’t all of world’s oil reserves being tapped?

By SHAWN MCCARTHY
Toronto Globe and Mail
2008-03-27 00:00:00

Under the original optimistic plans, nearly half a million barrels a day of crude oil should now be flowing from Kazakhstan’s Kashagan field, which contains the world’s largest untapped reserves.

Despite record crude prices, however, not a single barrel has made it out of the ground. Rather than stimulate production, the rising price of oil has actually contributed to lengthy delays with the Kashagan project.

Already facing extremely hostile physical conditions, the companies developing the project watched as skyrocketing oil prices fuelled inflation in construction costs and prompted the Kazakh government to revisit the production agreement. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

Shell to Sea protest in Dublin- midday next Saturday

This Saturday, if you are in Dublin, please join the Shell to Sea protest at the Shell petrol station on the Finglas Road.

12noon – March 29th at Shell Glasnevin, opposite the main gates of Glasnevin Cemetery.

All the fuel sold at this business still comes from Shell, even though the company running the forecourt has been changed.

This protest is to support the people of Rossport, who are under siege from Shell’s scheme to run a production pipeline through the blanket bog landscape near their homes. Shell have still refused to announce the route the pipeline wiill take, even though “consultation” ended months ago. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

WREG-TV Channel 3 Memphis: Shell ‘Autotude’ Survey Reveals What People Think About Their Vehicles and Driving

Survey finds more than 75 percent of Americans have bonded emotionally with their autos

HOUSTON, March 26 /PRNewswire/ — A new Shell “Autotude” Survey(i) reveals that American drivers think of their autos as more than just a piece of machinery. The survey shows Americans believe their vehicles have unique personalities (67 percent), would make them proud in front of their boss (64 percent) and can even score them a date (60 percent). Plus, there are regional differences in drivers’ “autotudes.” While most of the country views their cars and trucks as simply a way to get from point A to point B, drivers in the Farm Belt states (from North Dakota down to Kansas and Missouri) the Outer South (from Texas to Virginia) and New England(ii) say they actually enjoy and look forward to driving. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

Daily Mail (London): New Kremlin row as BP forced to suspend 148 staff in Russia over ‘visa violations’

Daily Mail BP image

Under pressure: The visa row over BP’s employees in Russia follows a raid last week on its HQ there

Last updated at 11:29am on 26th March 2008

BP has been forced to suspend 148 employees in Russia in a dispute over visas.

The suspensions will fuel suspicions that TNK-BP, the British energy giant’s Russian joint venture, is being squeezed as part of a Kremlin campaign to bring major oil and gas assets back under government control.

The visa row comes just days after an employee was charged with industrial espionage, and a week after a police raid on the Moscow offices of both BP and TNK-BP. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

The Washington Post: Pickens sees $100 oil through 2008: Pickens says: ‘The major oil companies are in liquidation.’

Tuesday, March 25, 2008; 12:29 PM

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Legendary oil investor T. Boone Pickens, who made more than $1 billion in 2006 by betting on rising oil prices, said he expects oil prices will hold near or above $100 a barrel for the rest of this year.

He added that he made “a mistake” when his fund shorted the energy market at the beginning of this year as crude prices surged to new peaks.

Pickens, who heads the BP Capital hedge fund, told CNBC television he thinks oil will “hang around” $100 in the second quarter and that “in the second half we’ll see above $100” because of strong fundamentals. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

Bloomberg: Exxon Overtakes PetroChina as World’s Biggest Company (Update2)

Bloomberg image

A customer looks over a gasoline pump at an Exxon station in Columbus, Ohio, Sept. 13, 2007. Photographer: Gary Gardiner/Bloomberg News

By Joe Carroll

March 26 (Bloomberg) — Exxon Mobil Corp. regained the mantle as the world’s biggest company by market value, overtaking PetroChina Co., whose shares have slumped 58 percent since its listing in Shanghai.

PetroChina dropped for a fifth day, falling 2.5 percent to 18.54 yuan by the close, reducing its market capitalization to $453.1 billion. The Chinese company’s Hong Kong-traded stock dropped 1.3 percent to HK$9.69. Exxon Mobil was valued at $455.8 billion today after rising 13 percent in the past year on record energy prices. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

Reuters: Japan’s Inpex acquires Shell UK offshore oil stake

Wed Mar 26, 2008 8:17am EDT

TOKYO, March 26 (Reuters) – INPEX Holdings Inc (1605.T: Quote, Profile, Research) said on Wednesday its subsidiary has acquired a stake in the Sheffield Island offshore P799 license project in waters off the United Kingdom from a Shell (RDSa.L: Quote, Profile, Research) subsidiary stakeholder.

An Inpex subsidiary was granted a 20 percent stake in the project.

Shell has a 38.5 percent stake and is the operator, while U.S. ConocoPhillips (COP.N: Quote, Profile, Research) has a 25 percent stake. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

STATEMENT BY ROYAL DUTCH SHELL PLC: Shell and Virent announce collaboration to develop biogasoline

26 Mar 2008 

Shell and Virent Energy Systems, Inc., (Virent (TM)) of Madison, Wisconsin USA, today announced a joint research and development effort to convert plant sugars directly into gasoline and gasoline blend components, rather than ethanol.

The collaboration could herald the availability of new biofuels that can be used at high blend rates in standard gasoline engines.  This could potentially eliminate the need for specialized infrastructure, new engine designs and blending equipment.

Virent’s BioForming(TM) platform technology uses catalysts to convert plant sugars into hydrocarbon molecules like those produced at a petroleum refinery.  Traditionally, sugars have been fermented into ethanol and distilled.  These new ‘biogasoline’ molecules have higher energy content than ethanol (or butanol) and deliver better fuel efficiency.  They can be blended seamlessly to make conventional gasoline or combined with gasoline containing ethanol. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

The Japan Times: APOCALYPSE WHEN? Can three experts all be wrong on looming disaster?

Wednesday, March 26, 2008
OUR PLANET EARTH
By STEPHEN HESSE

If you ask British scientist James Lovelock about the future of humanity, be prepared for a shock.

Writer Decca Aitkenhead of the London-based Guardian newspaper recently spoke with the 88-year-old independent scientist, inventor and author, and found his predictions “unnerving” and “alarming” — especially because Lovelock has a solid record when it comes to making predictions.

Ironically, Aitkenhead also found Lovelock surprisingly cheerful and insistent that he is an optimist — at least over the long term. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

The Globe and Mail: Why some reserves are going untapped

SHAWN McCARTHY
Wednesday, March 26, 2008

OTTAWA — Under the original optimistic plans, nearly half a million barrels a day of crude oil should now be flowing from Kazakhstan’s Kashagan field, which contains the world’s largest untapped reserves.

Despite record crude prices, however, not a single barrel has made it out of the ground. Rather than stimulate production, the rising price of oil has actually contributed to lengthy delays with the Kashagan project.

Already facing extremely hostile physical conditions, the companies developing the project watched as skyrocketing oil prices fuelled inflation in construction costs and prompted the Kazakh government to revisit the production agreement. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

THE NEW YORK TIMES: For Carbon Emissions, a Goal of Less Than Zero

New York Times Graphic 

Jose A. Martinez/Solena Group
GREEN GIANTS Algae, which have a high energy value per pound and consume carbon dioxide, are being cultivated at a biofuel demonstration facility run by the Solena Group in Alicante, Spain.

By MATTHEW L. WALD
Published: March 26, 2008

IF the world is going to sharply reduce the amount of carbon dioxide pumped into the atmosphere by midcentury, then many businesses will have to go carbon neutral, bringing their net emissions of the greenhouse gas to zero.

But some could go even further by removing more CO2 than they produce. Instead of carbon neutral, how about carbon negative? read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

arabtimesonline.com: Kuwait, Shell refinery to go onstream by ’10

BEIJING, March 25, (KUNA): China’s fourth-largest oil firm Sinochem Corp will start processing Kuwait’s crude at its planned refinery in East China as early as January 2010 through a joint venture with the state-owned Kuwait Petroleum Corporation (KPC) and Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Sinochem sources said Tuesday. “We reached a deal with our Kuwaiti partner for crude supply in June 2007, and the project is subject to approval of the central government,” company sources told Kuwait News Agency (KUNA). Earlier this month, Sinochem President Liu Deshu also confirmed during the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) that his firm has sealed the purchase agreement with the KPC. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: Saudi Desert’s Gas Mirage?

Wall Street Journal Graphic

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: Saudi Desert’s Gas Mirage?

Boast of Vast Reserves Faces
Growing Skepticism as Firms
Go Dry in the Empty Quarter
By GUY CHAZAN and NEIL KING JR.
March 25, 2008; Page B1

Saudi Arabia’s boast that its southern desert region contains vast reserves of natural gas is facing growing skepticism, amid a string of exploration setbacks by international oil companies operating there.

The kingdom had hoped that gas in the Rub al Khali, a vast desert that translates into English as the Empty Quarter, would be a key source of fuel for its booming economy. If the region turns out to be as empty as its name implies, Saudi Arabia runs the risk of a gas-supply crunch within the next decade at today’s rate of demand.
South Rub al Khali Co. so far has failed to hit large pockets of natural gas.
If that happens, and the kingdom has less gas than expected, it will be forced to divert more of the oil it produces for its own use, leaving less to fuel the rest of the world’s cars, airliners and factories. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: Russia Probes BP Venture

By GUY CHAZAN
March 26, 2008; Page B3

Putting more pressure on BP PLC’s Russian joint venture, Russian authorities disclosed a tax-evasion probe into one of its units five days after charging an employee with industrial espionage.

The probe, which came as TNK-BP admitted it was having trouble obtaining visas for 148 employees, casts further doubt over the company’s future. It coincides with a sharp rift in diplomatic relations between Russia and Britain and rising Kremlin pressure on Western oil companies as the Russian state seeks to increase its sway over the country’s mineral wealth. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: Biznes as Usual

REVIEW & OUTLOOK 
March 26, 2008

A senior executive at TNK-BP told us a few months ago that the oil company was “a poster child” for foreign investment in Russia. So it is turning out to be, only not in the way that he intended.

Blessed by Vladimir Putin at its creation in 2003, BP’s Russian joint venture is now getting the standard Kremlin treatment. Yesterday a “bureaucratic” visa problem forced the British company to send home 148 expatriate workers. Meanwhile, the Interior Ministry launched a “tax evasion” probe into a TNK-BP unit. And last week, the (renamed) KGB raided the oil company’s Moscow offices and arrested a Russian employee for “industrial espionage.” read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

The Independent: BP keeps staff off work in Russian visa row

By Danny Fortson, Business Correspondent
Wednesday, 26 March 2008

Fresh doubts have surfaced about the security of BP’s business in Russia after its subsidiary TNK-BP told nearly 150 workers not to go to work after Russian authorities warned that their visas were no longer valid.

The development is the latest in a string of worrying incidents to have hit BP’s operations in the country, which accounts for more than a fifth of its global oil production. Last week, a junior TNK-BP worker and his brother, who worked as a consultant to the company, were arrested by state security officers and charged with industrial espionage. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellenergy.website, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net and shell2004.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.
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