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Posts from ‘May, 2010’

Shell pledges $2B to cut gas flaring in Nigeria

LAGOS, Nigeria — Royal Dutch Shell PLC says it will spend more than $2 billion in the coming years to cut down on gas flaring in Nigeria’s oil-rich delta.

Shell announced Wednesday that its project would involve 26 flow stations in the Niger Delta, in areas where the oil major had seen its work stopped by funding shortages or security concerns.

Shell says its Nigerian subsidiary already spent more than $3 billion to install such equipment at 32 flow stations.

Gas flaring is the burning of natural gas that is produced along with crude oil. Environmentalists describe it as one of the largest sources of greenhouse gases, which cause global warming. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net, shell2004.com, shellshareholders.org, don-marketing.com and cybergriping.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article: royaldutchshellplc.com

Gulf of Mexico oil spill won’t stop Shell drilling in Alaska

DAILY TELEGRAPH

Royal Dutch Shell intends to push on with its plans for deepwater drilling off the coast of Alaska this summer, despite political hostility caused by BP’s catastrophic spill in US waters.

By Rowena Mason, City Reporter (Energy)
Published: 6:33AM BST 19 May 2010

The Deepwater Horizon oil rig on fire in the Gulf of Mexico last month Photo: AP

President Barack Obama has requested extra safety assurances about Shell’s plans and halted new exploration in some areas, after the explosion at BP’s well in the Gulf of Mexico three weeks ago.

But Shell yesterday told investors at its annual meeting in the Hague that it plans to press ahead.

“We won’t drill in Alaska if we can’t do so safely and responsibly,” said Peter Voser. chief executive. “The characteristics of the fields are different to those in the Gulf of Mexico – less deep and there is less pressure. We intend to drill this summer if allowed.” read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net, shell2004.com, shellshareholders.org, don-marketing.com and cybergriping.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article: royaldutchshellplc.com

Shell seeks to drill in Arctic seas this summer

guardian.co.uk home

• Shell ignores calls for moratorium on drilling
• Company says world needs 27bn barrel resource

Tim Webb: Tuesday 18 May 2010 19.13 BST

Shell yesterday pushed ahead with plans to drill in the Arctic Sea this summer, defying calls for a moratorium on offshore exploration in the pristine wilderness following the Gulf of Mexico disaster.

California’s governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger, this month scrapped plans to allow offshore drilling in the state for the first time in more than 40 years and environmentalists have called for a halt in the Arctic after President Obama opened up the area to drilling for the first time last month. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net, shell2004.com, shellshareholders.org, don-marketing.com and cybergriping.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article: royaldutchshellplc.com

Anti-Shell adverts and articles pulled just before publication

EXTRACT: “It is fair to conclude that Shell is allergic to criticism, and has no qualms about ruthlessly using its financial muscle to manipulate the news media, brainwash shareholders, greenwash motorists and censor critics who wish to point out the inconvenient truth.”

By John Donovan

Interesting to note the controversy over the last minute decision by the Financial Times against publishing a powerful anti-Shell advert by Amnesty International, who must be left wondering whether Shell brought some influence to bear?

I was left in the same position after The Sunday Times in 2007, aborted a half page article about us and our unique relationship with Shell.

At 11am on a Saturday morning, 3 February 2007, I received a phone call from a Sunday Times journalist, Steven Swinford. He read out the entire article to check on accuracy, particularly in respect of quotes attributed to me. Our involvement in the Sakhalin2 affair was described as the “ultimate revenge” costing Shell £11 billion UK pounds ($22 billion USD). read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net, shell2004.com, shellshareholders.org, don-marketing.com and cybergriping.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article: royaldutchshellplc.com

Why did the Financial Times pull an anti-Shell advert?

guardian.co.uk home

A late decision by the Financial Times to refuse to publish an advert hostile to the oil company Shell has outraged the UK branch of Amnesty International.

amnesty advertThe paper left it until the last possible moment to pull the hard-hitting ad, which was due to appear today to coincide with Shell’s annual meeting in London. The ad, shown here, accuses Shell of an appalling human rights record in Nigeria. Next to a wine glass overflowing with oil, it reads: “While Shell toasts $9.8bn profits, the people of the Niger Delta are having to drink polluted water. They’re also having to grow crops in polluted soil. To catch fish in polluted rivers. And to raise children in polluted homes. So if you’ve got shares in Shell, ask the board to explain themselves when they raise their glasses at today’s agm. Cheers.” read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net, shell2004.com, shellshareholders.org, don-marketing.com and cybergriping.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article: royaldutchshellplc.com

Amnesty ‘disappointed’ by FT’s decision to pull ad targeting Shell

Posted: 18 May 2010

Financial Times’ late call thwarts Amnesty’s campaign

Amnesty International UK expressed its immense disappointment today at the Financial Times’ decision to pull a new hard-hitting advertisement at the last possible moment. The ad was due to appear today as Shell held its London AGM.

The advertisement focused on the appalling human rights record of Shell in Nigeria. It compared the company’s $9.8bn profits with the consequences of pollution caused by the oil giant for the people of the Niger Delta.

Numerous oil spills, which have not been adequately cleaned up, have left local communities with little option but to drink polluted water, eat contaminated fish, farm on spoiled land, and breathe in air that stinks of oil and gas. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net, shell2004.com, shellshareholders.org, don-marketing.com and cybergriping.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article: royaldutchshellplc.com

Shell Corrib Gas Controversy: Call for Investigation into boat sinking

“A fisherman who is vehemently opposed to the Corrib Gas project claimed yesterday that his 40ft trawler was deliberately sunk by men armed with handguns who sneaked aboard the vessel off Erris Head in the early hours of yesterday morning.”

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Kilcommon group calling for investigation into boat sinking
BY MARIAN HARRISON

POBAL Chill Chomáin wants a “proper and independent investigation” into the sinking of the Iona Isle boat prior to offshore pipe-laying for the Corrib gas project last summer.

The calls come just a week after a human rights report on the Corrib saga recommended that a thorough investigation be held into an alleged assault on well-known protestor Willie Corduff.

Pat O’Donnell’s boat was sunk off Erris Head in a bizarre incident that has become the subject of counter-allegations from pro and anti gas groups. In a statement at the time, Mr O’Donnell claimed that four masked men, two of whom were armed, boarded his boat while he was laying lobster pots. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net, shell2004.com, shellshareholders.org, don-marketing.com and cybergriping.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article: royaldutchshellplc.com

Shell Makes Reassurances on Drilling

THE NEW YORK TIMES

By WILLIAM YARDLEY

Published: May 18, 2010

Responding to a federal request to increase safety measures for its plans to drill for oil in the Arctic Ocean, Shell Oil on Monday vowed an “unprecedented” response in the event of an oil spill, including staging a pre-made dome in Alaska for use in trying to contain any leaking well.

As the Obama Administration reviews the safety and environmental risks of offshore oil drilling after the spill in the Gulf of Mexico, the fate of the pending Shell project in Alaska looms more urgently. Shell has received initial permits and hopes to begin exploratory drilling this summer. Yet the project, which would be the first offshore drilling in Alaska in many years, still requires final permits and could be delayed. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net, shell2004.com, shellshareholders.org, don-marketing.com and cybergriping.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article: royaldutchshellplc.com

Delegation united in support of Shell’s Arctic drilling

CHUKCHI: Shell says it is taking new steps to safeguard exploration.

By ELIZABETH BLUEMINK
[email protected]

Published: May 17th, 2010 11:16 PM
Last Modified: May 17th, 2010 11:16 PM

Alaska’s pro-offshore drilling congressional delegation is optimistic that federal regulators will give Shell Oil a green light to explore in waters off the North Slope this summer.

Their testimonial to opening a controversial new oil frontier in Arctic waters came as Shell filed new assurances with federal regulators that the company has adopted new safeguards in the wake of the Gulf of Mexico spill.

The three-member congressional delegation had a rare convergence in Anchorage on Monday at a downtown Chamber of Commerce lunch.

Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Mark Begich and Congressman Don Young took turns during the lunch — which drew a crowd numbering in the hundreds — to share their opinions about national and Alaska energy issues. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net, shell2004.com, shellshareholders.org, don-marketing.com and cybergriping.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article: royaldutchshellplc.com

Disaster Plans Lacking at Deep Rigs

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

by Ben Casselman and Guy Chazen, Wall Street Journal

May 17th, 2010

[DeepwaterJmp2] Associated PressThe Deepwater Horizon oil rig burns in the Gulf of Mexico on April 21.

A huge jolt convulsed an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico. The pipe down to the well on the ocean floor, more than a mile below, snapped in two. Workers battled a toxic spill.

That was 2003—seven years before last month’s Deepwater Horizon disaster, which killed 11 people and sent crude spewing into the sea. And in 2004, managers of BP PLC, the oil giant involved in both incidents, warned in a trade journal that the company wasn’t prepared for the long-term, round-the-clock task of dealing with a deep-sea spill.

It still isn’t, as Deepwater Horizon demonstrates and as BP’s chief executive, Tony Hayward said recently. It’s “probably true” that BP didn’t do enough planning in advance of the disaster, Mr. Hayward said. There are some capabilities, he said, “that we could have available to deploy instantly, rather than creating as we go.”

It’s a problem that spans the industry, whose major players include Chevron Corp, Royal Dutch Shell and Petróleo Brasileiro SA. Without adequately planning for trouble, the oil business has focused on developing experimental equipment and techniques to drill in ever deeper waters, according to a Wall Street Journal examination of previous deepwater accidents. As drillers pushed the boundaries, regulators didn’t always mandate preparation for disaster recovery or perform independent monitoring.

The brief, roughly two-decade history of deepwater drilling has seen serious problems: fires, equipment failures, wells that collapsed, platforms that nearly sank. Since last July, one brand-new deepwater rig—among the 40 or so operating in at least 1,000 feet of water in the Gulf—was swept by fire. Another lost power and started to drift, threatening to detach from the wellhead. Poor maintenance at a third deepwater well led to a serious gas leak, according to regulatory records.

By some measures, offshore drilling has become safer in recent years. Industry backers argue that major accidents are rare. The rate of serious injuries in U.S. waters fell 71% between 1998 and 2008, and the number of serious oil spills has also been falling once hurricanes are taken into account. Moreover, deepwater drilling is by some measures safer than drilling in shallower waters, where rigs are often older and operated by smaller companies.

Still, drilling for oil at depths no human could survive presents special risks when something does go wrong. The water pressure is crushing, the seabed temperature is almost freezing, the underground conditions explosive. The rapid push into deeper water means that some projects rely on technology that hasn’t been used before.

“It’s like outer space, in terms of the complexity of the operating environment,” said Robin West, who helped oversee offshore-drilling policy under President Ronald Reagan and is now chairman of PFC Energy, a consulting firm.

In 2008, Chevron was plagued with accidents while using the Discoverer Deep Seas rig in more than 7,000 feet of water in the Gulf. There was a fire, then a leak deep under the sea. Finally the cement and steel casing inside the well collapsed, allowing drilling fluid to flow out of control. Workers stopped the flow only by permanently plugging the well.

Chevron says the well was “safely and permanently” abandoned after the problems. “One of Chevron’s core values is the safety of our employees, contractors and neighbors,” Chevron spokesman Kurt Glaubitz said. “It is fundamental to how we operate.”

BP has led the charge into the deepest, most challenging environments. Last week Mr. Hayward, the CEO, said, “It’s clear that we will find things we can do differently.”

As companies have moved farther offshore, drilling has gotten increasingly expensive. BP was paying nearly $500,000 a day to lease the Deepwater Horizon from Transocean Ltd. and paid roughly that much again for other equipment and services.

One of the most serious safety hazards on rigs are “blowouts,” the uncontrolled flows of oil and natural gas like the one that brought down the Deepwater Horizon. They remain relatively rare, but no more so than in the 1960s, when equipment was much more primitive.

That’s in part because, even as the gear used to fight blowouts has improved, the industry has steadily pushed into deeper waters.

“While drilling as a whole may be advancing to keep up with these environments, some parts lag behind,” Texas A&M professors Samuel Noynaert and Jerome Schubert wrote in a 2005 paper published in an industry journal. “An area that has seen this stagnation and resulting call for change has been blowout control in deep and ultra-deep waters.”

The professors declined to comment for this article.

Serious accidents like the Deepwater Horizon have been rare, but not unheard of. In 2001, an oil-and-gas-production platform off Brazil’s coast exploded and ultimately sank, killing 11 people.

Offshore drilling is almost as old as the oil industry itself. In the 1890s, companies began prospecting for oil from piers extending off the beach near Santa Barbara, Calif. In 1947, Kerr McGee Corp. (which was later acquired by Anandarko Petroleum Corp.) drilled the first well out of sight of land, in the Gulf of Mexico.

In the past decade or so, what had been a steady march into deeper water turned into a sprint, as easier-to-find oil fields dwindled. In 1996, Royal Dutch Shell broke new ground with its Mars platform, which floated in 3,000 feet of water. A decade later, wells in 5,000 feet of water—almost a mile deep—were so common as to be considered relatively routine. Several rigs working today can drill in water as much as 12,000 feet deep, more than two miles above the ocean floor.

DeepwaterJmp3 Associated Press

Petrobras’ P-36 platform offshore Brazil in the process of sinking after explosions in 2001

Shell says it has operated in the Gulf for five decades without “a significant offshore well incident or platform spill in the deep water Gulf of Mexico.”

Drilling in deeper water doesn’t change the fundamental process, but it makes virtually everything harder. Rigs must be bigger so they can hold more drilling pipe to stretch vast distances. The pipes themselves must be stronger to withstand ocean currents. Equipment on the sea floor must be sturdier to face extreme pressures at depth.

Drill bits must be tougher so they don’t melt in the 400-degree temperatures they encounter deep in the earth. And it is harder for drillers to exert just the right amount of pressure down the well bore, enough to keep oil and gas from spurting upwards—a blowout—but not so much that they crack open the rocks beneath the surface, which could also lead to a blowout.

The use of untested techniques has raised alarm bells among some engineers. In a paper published in a trade journal last year, three industry engineers in Denmark noted that many deepwater projects are “dependent on prototype and novel technologies.” They said, “there is significant uncertainty related to the performance of these systems,” because they haven’t been tested in real-world settings.

They couldn’t be reached for comment.

BP discovered that in 1999 at its Thunder Horse offshore oil field in the Gulf of Mexico, where managers say hundreds of pieces of equipment had to be created from scratch.

Not all the brand-new systems worked. Thunder Horse had a near disaster in 2005, when a faulty control system opened valves and allowed water to flood into the hull of a drilling platform there. The multibillion-dollar platform almost sank. BP spent months fixing equipment damaged in the flood.

And in 2006, as Thunder Horse was getting close to completion, workers discovered a leak in one of the huge sets of valves on the seafloor that control the flow of oil and gas from the wells. An investigation found minute cracks in a protective coating on some of the pipes, allowing corrosion that could, ultimately, have led to breakage of the pipes. BP had to pull the equipment back to the surface for repairs, delaying the project for months and raising the costs.

Equipment failure was also to blame in the case of the Discoverer Enterprise, the rig that ran into trouble in 2003 when the “riser,” the pipe down to the seafloor, snapped in two. That left the Enterprise floating free, with no immediate way to control the well sitting on the sea floor more than a mile below. That well, investigators later concluded, had the potential to spew more oil in one week than was spilled in 1989 by the Exxon Valdez, which ranks as one of the worst U.S. oil spills to date.

In a 2004 article in a trade journal, two BP managers evaluated the company’s response to the Discoverer Enterprise incident. Their conclusion: Although the company’s initial reaction was strong, it had “less focus” on the longer term and wasn’t prepared for the nearly two weeks of round-the-clock response even the fairly small spill required.

A BP spokesman said it follows a “tried-and-tested approach to incident management.”

Catastrophe was averted in the Discoverer Enterprise case because, unlike at the Deepwater Horizon, the well’s “dead-man switch” was triggered when the riser broke. A powerful contraption known as a blowout preventer sheared off the pipe and sealed off the well. Some 2,450 barrels of drilling fluid inside the riser spilled into the Gulf, but the well itself was secure.

Today, the Discoverer Enterprise is located at the site where the Deepwater Horizon sank, sucking up oil from the still-leaking well through a special tube.

Drilling companies have pushed the limits of technology in blowout preventers, also known as BOPs. Multiple technical papers have called into question whether the shears are powerful enough to cut through the tough steel used in modern drilling pipe at the deepest wells. A 2004 study commissioned by federal regulators found that only three of 14 newly built rigs had shears powerful enough to cut through pipe at the equipment’s maximum water depth.

“This grim snapshot illustrates the lack of preparedness in the industry to shear and seal a well with the last line of defense against a blowout,” the study said.

Andy Radford, a policy adviser for the American Petroleum Institute, said the group recommends that all blowout preventers be equipped with shears powerful enough to cut through the pipe being used.

Some subsequent studies, including a 2007 paper co-authored by a BP engineer, have echoed those concerns. “The use of higher strength, higher toughness drill pipe … has in some cases exceeded the capacity of some BOP shear rams to successfully and or reliably shear drill pipe,” the 2007 paper said.

When things go wrong in deep water, the problems are harder to solve. “If we can touch the wellhead, we have a really super high chance of making the flow stop,” said Daniel Eby, vice president of Cudd Well Control, a contractor that helps oil companies stop out-of-control wells. “The problem comes when you can’t touch it. And when you put that wellhead in 5,000 feet of water, we can’t touch it.”

The current crisis is widely expected to send insurance costs higher for deepwater drilling. Lloyd & Partners Ltd., a London broker, recently said it would cut back the amount of pollution insurance it offers to oil companies by a third. In general, rates have risen for all drilling rigs in recent years due to hurricane damage and other issues, but haven’t been consistently higher for deepwater rigs than for those in shallower water.

Government regulators have long known that the deepwater presents special challenges. After the 2003 accident on the Discoverer Enterprise, researchers from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration conducted a study looking at how to tell where oil from an undersea spill would reach the surface, and how to better coordinate with workers respondomg to a spill.

The Minerals Management Service, the government agency that oversees offshore drilling, in recent years moved away from requiring specific safety measures in offshore drilling and instead set broad performance goals that it was up to the industry to meet.

MMS declined to make an official available for an interview for this article. In a statement, the agency said it’s reviewing its oversight in light of the disaster.

In joint MMS-Coast Guard hearings into the Deepwater Horizon accident, Michael Saucier, an MMS official, testified that the agency “highly encouraged,” but didn’t require, companies to have back-up systems to trigger blowout preventers in case of an emergency.

“Highly encourage? How does that translate to enforcement?” Coast Guard Capt. Hung Nguyen, who is co-chairing the investigation, asked at the hearings.

“There is no enforcement,” Mr. Saucier replied.

Coast Guard Lt. Cmdr. Michael Odom, who oversees Coast Guard inspections (the Coast Guard inspects oil-company vessels above the water, while the MMS oversees drilling) testified that current regulations for offshore drilling may be out-of-date. He said many regulations were written years ago, and focused on near-shore drilling operations.

“The pace of technology has definitely outrun the regulations,” Mr. Odom said at the hearing.

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net, shell2004.com, shellshareholders.org, don-marketing.com and cybergriping.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article: royaldutchshellplc.com

Shell adds precautions for Arctic drilling

latimes.com

The oil company says it will have a containment dome, submersible vehicle and divers at its drilling site.

By Kim Murphy, Los Angeles Times Reporting from SeattleMay 18, 2010 Facing last-minute questions over its plan to launch exploratory oil drilling in the Arctic Ocean, Shell Oil Co. pledged Monday to deploy a prefabricated coffer dam ready for “immediate” use in the event of a blowout, with a full-scale oil spill response within an hour.
In a letter intended to reassure federal officials that offshore drilling can safely begin in the fragile Arctic in July despite the spill in the Gulf of Mexico, Shell said it also would be ready to apply dispersant immediately underwater near the source of any oil flow and would have a remotely operated submersible and trained divers at the drilling site.
A 100-ton containment dome was deployed over the Gulf of Mexico leak, but it was abandoned when it became clogged with ice-like crystallized methane gas. Shell said its coffer dam would “take into consideration” the problems BP experienced and presumably provide a workable containment method.

“Shell is committed to undertaking a safe and environmentally responsible exploration program in the Chukchi Sea and Beaufort Sea in 2010,” Shell President Marvin E. Odum said in a letter to the federal Minerals Management Service, dated Friday but made public Monday. “I am confident that we are ready to conduct the … program safely, and, I want to be clear, the accountability for this program rests with Shell.”

After the BP disaster off the coast of Louisiana, federal officials asked Shell for additional information about its oil spill prevention and response plans, especially since a spill in the remote Chukchi and Beaufort seas could have devastating consequences on the delicate Arctic ecosystem.

Critics say no full-fledged oil spill cleanup drills have been conducted in the Chukchi, where Shell will be relying on a fleet of response vessels accompanying the drilling rig and other equipment stationed at the remote village of Wainwright, Alaska, and elsewhere on the North Slope. read more

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Shell faces shareholder questions on tar sands

The Independent

By Sarah Arnott

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Shell will become the latest major corporation to face investor questions about tar sands developments at its annual general meeting (AGM) today.

Demonstrations outside the meeting in The Hague will be calling for an end to tar sands exploitation, while inside the hall the Anglo-Dutch group’s executives will be quizzed by shareholders on the financial risks.

Some 142 investors have backed a special resolution calling on Shell to give more details on the financial, environmental and human rights risks of tar sand, which make up a third of the major’s resource portfolio. read more

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Royal Dutch Shell is hit by news hoax

Times Online

The Times May 18, 2010
Robin Pagnamenta

Royal Dutch Shell became the victim of an elaborate internet hoax yesterday after a fake news release was circulated about its operations in Nigeria.

The bogus e-mail, which featured a Shell logo, links to company websites and cautionary footnotes, claimed that the company planned to suspend deepwater drilling off the coast of Nigeria.

The e-mail invited journalists to call a telephone number, which was answered by hoaxers who claimed to work for “Shell media relations” and who claimed that the decision had been taken after pressure from campaign groups such as Amnesty International. read more

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Gulf Oil Spill Isn’t Just Damaging To BP

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

MAY 17, 2010

By James Herron

When BP implements increasingly desperate-sounding methods to shut down its leaking well next week–blasting golf balls, shredded rubber and other junk into the well before filling it with cement–the rest of the oil industry will no doubt be praying for its success. [Read BP’s latest press statement on the disaster here.]

You might think that companies like Royal Dutch Shell or ExxonMobil, both of which have had their share of environmental or safety scandals, would feel some relief that someone else is drawing the political heat. But the failure of a company as well funded, experienced and technologically advanced as BP to get a grip on this disaster after almost four weeks damages others too. read more

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Hoaxers target Shell with bogus Nigeria news

(Reuters) – Hoaxers targeted oil and gas major Royal Dutch Shell Plc on Monday, sending a bogus statement to news organisations about the company’s operations in Nigeria.

The e-mail, complete with Shell logo and links to genuine websites including Shell’s own, as well as to Shell’s customary footnotes about forward-looking statements, said the company planned to halt deepwater drilling off the coast of Nigeria.

“We are investigating who is behind the hoax e-mail,” said Shell spokesman Rainer Winzenried.

When contacted on the given phone number, hoaxers answered the phone by saying “Shell media relations” and proceeded to answer questions about drilling in Nigeria, saying Shell was facing pressure from groups such as Amnesty International. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net, shell2004.com, shellshareholders.org, don-marketing.com and cybergriping.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article: royaldutchshellplc.com

Arctic Drilling May be in Jeopardy

FOX NEWS

May 17, 2010 – 12:50 PM | by: Dan Springer

Shell Oil Company was all set to begin exploring the petroleum-rich arctic waters off the northwest coast of Alaska. But then the major spill in the Gulf of Mexico happened.

In response, President Obama issued a 30-day moritorium on new drilling permits and environmental groups sued to permanently block the plans. The moritorium is set to expire at the end of May.

The administration had already approved Shell’s plan to drill five exploratory wells this July in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas. And the Justice Department defended that decision to a three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in Portland. Late last week the panel denied a request from Alaska Natives and environmental groups for an injunction to halt the drilling. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net, shell2004.com, shellshareholders.org, don-marketing.com and cybergriping.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article: royaldutchshellplc.com

Shell to close main Montreal units in September

REUTERS

Main refinery units to shut in Sept.

CALGARY, Alberta, May 17 (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSa.L) expects to shut the major units at its 130,000 barrel per day Montreal East refinery by September, as it follows through on plans to convert the facility into a distribution terminal.

The company will close the refinery’s main processing units — the alkylation unit and catalytic cracker — in September, with other units following.

The plant is expected to stop taking crude deliveries prior to the shutdown of the units, likely by the end of August, the company said. read more

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net, shell2004.com, shellshareholders.org, don-marketing.com and cybergriping.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article: royaldutchshellplc.com

Qatar, Shell, China’s CNPC in gas agreement

BusinessWeek Logo

The Associated Press May 17, 2010, 12:51AM ET

Qatar has signed an agreement with Royal Dutch Shell and China National Petroleum Corp. to jointly explore for and produce natural gas onshore and offshore Qatar, Shell said Monday.

The 30-year agreement calls for Shell and CNPC’s PetroChina International to worth together in exploring for natural gas. Shell will hold a 75 percent share of the project, with CNPC holding the remaining 25 percent, Shell said in a statement.

The 8,089 square kilometer (3,123.17 sq. mile) “Block D” includes both offshore and onshore areas near Qatar’s northern city of Ras Laffan. read more

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Shell eyes partnerships with national oil firms

REUTERS

* Australia major destination for investments

By Fayen Wong

BRISBANE, May 17 (Reuters) – Energy giant Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSa.L) may seek to forge more partnerships with national oil companies in a bid to gain greater market access, a senior company official said on Monday.

Ann Pickard, Shell’s new head of Australian oil and gas, told Reuters in an interview that Australia will also become the biggest destination for its investments in the next few years as it looks to boost its natural gas business to satisfy growing Asian demand. read more

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Shell Says Australia to Become Its Biggest Region for Spending

BusinessWeek Logo

By James Paton

May 17 (Bloomberg) — Royal Dutch Shell Plc said it expects Australia to attract more of the energy company’s investment than any other region, driven by liquefied natural gas projects.

Shell’s Australian workforce for gas exploration and production is likely to increase fourfold, Shell Australia Executive Vice President Ann Pickard said in an interview in Brisbane today. She gave no timeline for the increased spending or staff count.

To contact the reporter on this story: James Paton in Sydney at [email protected] read more

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Drilling critics fear spill in remote Chukchi Sea; Shell says risk not comparable to gulf

latimes.com

DAN JOLING Associated Press WriterMay 16, 2010 | 1:00 p.m.

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Inupiat Eskimo whale hunter George Kingik follows news accounts of the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. He cringes when he imagines crude fouling his backyard, Alaska’s Chukchi Sea.

“They’re not ready for the Arctic,” Kingik said from his home in Point Hope, 700 miles northwest of Anchorage. “It’s completely different up here.”

Shell Oil two years ago spent $2.1 billion for leases in the Chukchi, the arm of the Arctic Ocean that the United States shares with Russia, and the home to one of America’s two polar bear populations. read more

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Despite massive Gulf oil spill, offshore oil drilling starts soon in the Arctic Ocean

Shell, of course, says there is nothing to worry about. In an e-mail to the Associated Press, Shell VP Pete Slaiby told the AP's Dan Joling: "We are working hard to identify additional measures that could be incorporated into the (safety) program." Do tell.

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Blowout Complicates Plan to Drill in Arctic

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

MAY 15, 2010

By JIM CARLTON

ANCHORAGE, Alaska—Plans by Royal Dutch Shell PLC to begin exploratory oil drilling in the Arctic Ocean this summer are drawing increased scrutiny in the wake of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.

Interior Department officials—under pressure from native and environmental groups to halt the activity—say their final drilling permits will be contingent on new safety reviews.

Last fall, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar approved Shell’s plans to drill five exploratory wells in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas after the area was opened to oil and gas leasing in 2008 by the Bush administration. But Interior still has to sign off on the permits, and officials there now say their decision would rest, in part, on the outcome of a federal review President Barack Obama ordered completed by May 28 of safety issues pertaining to drilling in U.S. offshore waters. read more

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Oil spill on ice not worth the risk

Photo shows the coastal plain within the 1002 Area of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in this undated handout photo provided by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Alaska Image Library. REUTERS/HANDOUT/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

REUTERS

May 14, 2010 11:44 EDT

– Dennis Takahashi-Kelso is executive vice president of Ocean Conservancy and wasAlaska Commissioner of Environmental Conservation at the time of the Exxon Valdez spill. Jim Ayers is vice president and senior adviser at Oceana and was executive director of the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Trustee Council. Any views expressed here are their own. –
read more

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Free Research Access on Royal Dutch Shell Plc (over 25,000 articles and documents)

FREE RESEARCH

We have the worlds largest online library of news articles and leaked documents about the oil giant Royal Dutch Shell and related matters. They are all available FREE for educational and research purposes.

Over 25,000 are stored here and on our sister website: www.ShellNews.net

Over 18,500 articles and documents are available on this website by using our internal Search facility. There are no charges of any kind.

For access to over 7,000 further articles/documents, click on the link below… read more

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U.S. Said to Allow Drilling Without Needed Permits

THE NEW YORK TIMES

By IAN URBINA Published: May 13, 2010

Charlie Riedel/Associated Press: A brown pelican flew Thursday past protective booms surrounding the Breton National Wildlife Reserve in the Gulf of Mexico.

A version of this article appeared in print on May 14, 2010, on page A1 of the New York edition.

WASHINGTON — The federal Minerals Management Service gave permission to BP and dozens of other oil companies to drill in the Gulf of Mexico without first getting required permits from another agency that assesses threats to endangered species — and despite strong warnings from that agency about the impact the drilling was likely to have on the gulf. read more

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Appeals court rejects challenge to fed approval of Shell exploratory drilling plan in Arctic

By: DAN JOLING
Associated Press
05/13/10 7:20 PM EDT

ANCHORAGE, ALASKA  — A federal appeals court Thursday removed a legal challenge standing in the way of Shell Oil’s plans to drill wells off Alaska’s shore this summer. A three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected a case that challenged federal approval of Shell’s exploratory drilling plans in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas. The expedited ruling followed oral arguments last week in Portland, Ore.

The court determined that the federal Minerals Management Service met its obligations to consider the potential threat to wildlife and the risk for disaster before it approved Shell’s Arctic Ocean project.

Shell Oil, a unit of Royal Dutch Shell PLC, hopes to drill three exploratory wells in the Chukchi and two in the Beaufort this summer with a 514-foot drilling ship, the Frontier Discoverer.

Chris Krenz, Arctic project manager for Oceana, one of the plaintiffs, said the decision was disappointing in light of the ongoing BP crude oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. read more

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Shell Apologises for Human Rights Violations in Niger Delta

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zciWUOrIUqo&feature=player_embedded

Today, Royal Dutch Shell is holding back the tears no more. Shell apologises to all inhabitants of Nigeria’s Niger Delta for the many years of human rights violations, for which Shell takes full responsibility.

Confronted with massive evidence of human rights violations that can only be attributed to its operations in the Niger Delta, Royal Dutch Shell is extremely proud to be the first international petrochemical company to publicly say: read more

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Motiva Reports Early Power Snag At Port Arthur Refinery

Thursday, 13 May 2010 – 02:31

NEW YORK -(Dow Jones)- Motiva Enterprises LLC (RDSA, RDSA.LN) Wednesday filed an emissions event report to Texas state environmental regulators stating that an early-day power outage slowed or shut several processing units.

The power interruption occurred just after 3:00 a.m. CDT and was caused by a fire at an electrical pole, the report to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality said.

“Individual units followed start-up, shutdown and maintenance procedures to safely stabilize unit operations, and minimize emissions,” the filing said, but it was unclear whether operations had returned to normal. read more

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What About the Arctic?

Newsweek

With exploratory drilling—the same kind BP was doing in the Gulf of Mexico—planned for this summer north of Alaska, environmentalists see a worrisome comparison.

By Daniel Stone | Newsweek Web Exclusive May 12, 2010

It wasn’t that long ago that proponents of oil drilling, and even President Obama, were arguing that the threat of spills had been substantially reduced thanks to new advances in drilling technology. It’s a claim that sounds humbling in light of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill. But rather than harp on the past, environmentalists are focusing their efforts on the future, specifically this summer, when another round of exploratory drilling is set to begin off the pristine coasts of Alaska. read more

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Shell’s Voser sees inevitable energy price rise

REUTERS

* Four new Saudi Arabias needed by 2020

* Shift towards biofuels, natural gas

ZURICH, May 12 (Reuters) – Higher energy prices are inevitable as it gets ever more difficult to extract oil and gas and the cost of carbon emissions is incorporated, Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L)’s CEO said in an interview with a Swiss paper.

He also cited rising demand as a spur to price and said by 2020 the world would have to develop oil sources equivalent to four times the capacity of leading exporter Saudi Arabia.

“We assume, (prices) will rise longer term,” Peter Voser told Wednesday’s edition of the Handelszeitung newspaper. read more

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Will the Gulf Accident Stymie Plans to Drill in Alaska?

An offshore oil rig in Cook Inlet, Alaska Paul Souders / Getty Images

By Bryan Walsh Wednesday, May. 12, 2010

Desperate times call for desperate measures — an apt characterization of energy giant BP’s ongoing, checkered response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Last weekend, the company’s plan to lower a massive dome over the leaks 5,000 ft. below the surface of the Gulf of Mexico hit a serious snag, when hydrates — slushy ice crystals that occur when gas mixes with water — formed at the top of the dome, blocking any captured oil from being channeled to the surface. (See pictures of the oil spill.) read more

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Kuwait Talking With Shell, Total, Exxon to Develop Heavy Oil

BusinessWeek Logo

May 12, 2010, 12:40 AM EDT

By Ayesha Daya

May 11 (Bloomberg) — Kuwait is talking with Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Total SA and Exxon Mobil Corp. to develop heavy-crude deposits, Sami al-Rushaid, chairman of state-run Kuwait Oil Co., said today.

Kuwait is seeking to produce 270,000 barrels a day from the heavy oil deposits, he said. Kuwait Oil plans to spend as much as 7 billion dinars in the next five years on projects, al- Rushaid said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Ayesha Daya in Dubai at [email protected] read more

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Questor share tip: buy Shell for yield

Daily Telegraph

A 9pc fall in Royal Dutch Shell’s share prices is a buying opportunity, says Questor.

Garry White
Published: 6:00AM BST 12 May 2010

Royal Dutch Shell B

Royal Dutch Shell “B”
£18.15½ -0.5p
Questor says BUY

The best investment strategy to use at the moment is to sell the rallies and buy the dips. If you believe in this strategy, you should be buying Royal Dutch Shell.

Shell shares hit a 12-month high on April 30, but have slid by almost 9pc since then on worries over sovereign debt and global growth. The situation with BP has also been unhelpful.

However, the share price fall now means the yield is a very impressive 6.3pc. Questor reckons that now is a good time to top up your holdings or make a new purchase of the shares. read more

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Shell Finds More Evidence of Oil in Brazilian Field

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By Peter Millard and Joao Lima

May 11 (Bloomberg) — Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Europe’s biggest oil company by market value, found more evidence of oil at a project in Brazil’s offshore Campos Basin where the company has increased production faster than expected.

Shell made the discovery at the Nautilus field, which is 1,571.75 meters (5,157 feet) deep, the Brazilian petroleum regulator said. The field, located in block BC-10, was declared a commercial find in December 2005.

Companies including Shell, Chevron Corp. and Galp Energia SGPS SA have boosted production this year in Brazil’s Atlantic waters, where state-run Petroleo Brasileiro SA made the largest oil discovery in the Americas since 1976 at the Tupi field. Shell has brought production on line at BC-10 faster than it expected, Chief Financial Officer Simon Henry said in a conference call with investors April 28. read more

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Ex-Shell Oil President Hofmeister’s 2 cents on Deepwater Horizon…

THE NEW YORK TIMES

Plan B in the Gulf

By RIKI OTT, KEN ARNOLD, JOHN HOFMEISTER, TERRY HAZEN and KEVIN M. YEAGER

A version of this article appeared in print on May 11, 2010, on page A23 of the New York edition.

Over the weekend BP learned that its latest effort at stanching the Deepwater Horizon oil spill — placing a huge metal dome over the leak — had failed. With the oil slick now washing up on the Louisiana shore, the Op-Ed editors asked five experts for their thoughts on what should be done now — and how we can avoid future catastrophes.

read more

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US oil industry watchdog to be broken up

Some staff had also accepted gifts and free holidays, amid “a culture of ethical failure”, according to the investigation.

BBC NEWS

One of the New Harbor Islands is protected by two oil booms  against the oil slick

Experts fear the oil could cause an ecological disaster

The US is to break up a federal oil industry watchdog – amid conflict of interest fears – following the Gulf of Mexico oil spill disaster.

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar unveiled the plans to split up the Minerals Management Service, which both inspects rigs and collects oil royalties.

Oil executives have been passing blame, as they were grilled at a Senate hearing into the spill, amid protests.

President Barack Obama says he is “frustrated” the leak is not plugged. read more

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Exxon, Shell Said to Consider Sale of German Gas-Storage Sites

BusinessWeek Logo

By Nicholas Comfort

May 11 (Bloomberg) — Exxon Mobil Corp. and Royal Dutch Shell Plc are considering a sale of natural-gas storage capacity in Germany as they focus on exploration, according to three people familiar with the matter.

The companies may begin a sale process next month after deciding which assets to offload from their BEB Erdgas und Erdoel GmbH unit, said one of the people, who declined to be identified because the plans are private.

Shell and Exxon hold equal stakes in the Hanover, Germany- based gas-storage operator, which has about 2 billion cubic meters of working storage spread over three facilities in the north of the country, according to its Web site. read more

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FAREWELL PRESIDENT YAR’ ADUA OF NIGERIA

The Ogoni people and National Union of Ogoni Students’ USA shall always remember him for his calm demeanor, professional decorum as he approached turbulent issues in Nigeria. He had a listening ear. Ingrained on our minds is his support of the position of the Ogoni people against Shell Oil Company.

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Ballinaboy locals ‘hurt’ by jailing of fisherman

The fact that An Bord Pleanála had recently found up to half of the modified onshore pipeline route to be unacceptable on safety grounds had exacerbated fears among residents living close to the gas terminal, Ms Healy said.

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Shell says it applied ‘highest standards’

The Irish Times – Monday, May 10, 2010

LORNA SIGGINS

SHELL EP Ireland Ltd has responded to the recent Frontline human rights organisation’s report on the Corrib gas dispute by stating it has “always applied the highest professional standards in its approach to the Corrib gas project”.

The report by barrister Brian Barrington, published last month, was critical of the company, the Government, the Garda and Shell security I-RMS.

“The regulations relating to the Corrib gas project are enormously complex, involving multiple consents under different legislation, from several Government departments, multiple statutory agencies and the local authority in Mayo,” Shell said. read more

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Methane Breached Faulty Seal, Caused Rig Blast, Professor Says

May 8 (Bloomberg) -- Bubbles of methane gas burst through a cement seal that was probably faulty, leading to the fatal explosion aboard the Deepwater Horizon rig and subsequent oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, said a California professor who reviewed transcripts of interviews with blast witnesses.

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net, shell2004.com, shellshareholders.org, don-marketing.com and cybergriping.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article: royaldutchshellplc.com

Iran steps up gas field pressure on foreign firms

Massoud Mirkazemi did not name any firms in a report carried by Mehr News Agency. But another official last month said Iran had given Royal Dutch Shell and Repsol one week to decide on their involvement in the offshore field.

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net, shell2004.com, shellshareholders.org, don-marketing.com and cybergriping.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article: royaldutchshellplc.com

Shell’s Alaska Oil Drilling Plan Draws New Scrutiny

In a letter late Thursday, the director of the United States Minerals Management Service asked the president of Shell, Marvin E. Odum, to provide more information about safety precautions for the project while the agency, part of the Interior Department, conducts an “expanded review” of permit applications “based on the Deepwater Horizon disaster.”

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Shell, we are Africans, not slaves

MAY DAY PROTEST BY SHELL EMPLOYEES IN MOROCCO OVER SHELL PLANS TO EXIT FROM 21 AFRICAN COUNTRIES WITHOUT SEVERANCE OR COMPENSATION PAYMENTS TO SHELL STAFF


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U.S. seeks more data from Shell on Arctic Ocean drilling plans

"The recent and ongoing tragedy of the Deepwater Horizon incident in the Gulf of Mexico highlights the importance of taking every step necessary to ensure the safety of all offshore drilling operations," Elizabeth Birnbaum, the director of the Minerals Management Service, wrote Thursday to Marvin Odum, the head of Shell's North American division.

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Shell CEO Calls For Search For Cause Of Gulf Oil Spill

NASDAQ

Friday 7 May 2010

ST. GALLEN, Switzerland -(Dow Jones)- Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RSDA) Chief Executive Peter Voser Friday called for a thorough evaluation of the cause of an oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, while indicating he is against a White House move to put new offshore drilling on hold.

“I think we need to look into what caused this accident–was it technical in nature, or human error,” Voser said on a sidelines of a business conference in St. Gallen.

BP PLC (BP) has been deemed the responsible party for a massive oil spill that has resulted from a leaking well in the Gulf of Mexico. The oil began spewing from the well after a Transocean Ltd. (RIG) rig caught fire April 20 and later sank. read more

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Nigeria: Shell can’t meet oil production target

LAGOS, Nigeria — Royal Dutch Shell PLC announced Friday that it would not be able to fulfill some of its oil production contracts after a fire on one of its major pipelines in Nigeria that the company has blamed on thieves.

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Shell To Court: Ready To Drill Arctic Ocean

ASSOCIATED PRESS

May 6, 2010 1:53 pm US/Mountain

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) ? Shell Oil says it’s ready to drill in the Arctic Ocean and has plans to deal with any problems if a federal appeals court allows it to begin its exploration project on schedule in July.

Shell told a three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Portland on Thursday it has met nearly all the government requirements for test drilling in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas off the northwest coast of Alaska.

Lawyers for a coalition of environmentalists and Alaska Native groups argue more study is needed, especially after the recent Gulf of Mexico oil spill showed the risk of a catastrophe. read more

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Nigeria: Fire hits Shell pipeline; Eni fixes flow

LAGOS, Nigeria — Royal Dutch Shell PLC said Thursday that a fire struck one of its major crude oil pipelines running through Nigeria's southern delta, cutting into production.

royaldutchshellplc.com and its sister websites royaldutchshellgroup.com, shellnazihistory.com, royaldutchshell.website, johndonovan.website, shellnews.net, shell2004.com, shellshareholders.org, don-marketing.com and cybergriping.com are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article: royaldutchshellplc.com