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Posts on ‘February 9th, 2011’

WikiLeaks cables: Saudi Arabia cannot pump enough oil to keep a lid on prices home

US diplomat convinced by Saudi expert that reserves of world’s biggest oil exporter have been overstated by nearly 40%

John Vidal, environment editor: Tuesday 8 February 2011 22.00 GMT

Saudi oil refinery. WikiLeaks cables suggest the amount of oil that can be retrieved has been overestimated. Photograph: George Steinmetz/Corbis

The US fears that Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest crude oil exporter, may not have enough reserves to prevent oil prices escalating, confidential cables from its embassy in Riyadh show.

The cables, released by WikiLeaks, urge Washington to take seriously a warning from a senior Saudi government oil executive that the kingdom’s crude oil reserves may have been overstated by as much as 300bn barrels – nearly 40%. read more and its sister websites,,,,, and are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

Shell, BP to Close, Sell Oil Refineries in Europe, U.S.

By Nidaa Bakhsh – Feb 9, 2011 12:01 AM GMT+0000

Royal Dutch Shell Plc and BP Plc, Europe’s largest oil companies, plan to close and sell refineries in the U.S. and Germany on declining demand for fuels such as gasoline in developed nations.

BP plans to sell its 475,000 barrel-a-day Texas City refinery in Texas and its 266,000 barrel-a-day Carson plant in California, the London-based company said on Feb. 1.

Shell plans to stop oil-processing at its 110,000 barrel-a- day Hamburg facility in 2012 after failing to find a buyer, the company based in The Hague said on Jan. 12.

Following are two tables. The first lists refineries around the world that have shut, are slated for permanent closure or conversion, units idled for economic reasons, and those that are up for sale. The second shows refinery sales that have been agreed or completed since early 2010. Capacity is shown in thousands of barrels of oil a day.


Company      Refinery         Status                 Capacity


Shell        Hamburg          Plans to convert       110
             Germany          site into terminal
                              in 2012, after
                              failing to find
                              buyer, company
                              said on Jan. 12.

Shell        Stanlow          Up for sale.           233
             U.K.             Announced in August


Shell        Montreal         Conversion to          130
             Canada           terminal after
                              operations ceased in
                              Oct. 2010.


Showa Shell  Keihin           Permanent closure      120
             Japan            of Ogimachi crude
                              unit in September


Company      Refinery         Status                 Capacity

Shell        Gothenburg       Agreed sale to St1     78
             Sweden           Oy of Finland on Oct.

Shell        Heide            Agreed sale to         91
             Germany          U.K.’s Klesch & Co.
                              on Aug. 20.

Shell        Marsden Pt       Shell sells 17%        109
             New Zealand      share to Infratil
                              and government
                              pension fund in
                              March 2010.
  read more and its sister websites,,,,, and are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

Big Oil Bangs the Drum for Natural Gas


By James Herron: 8 February 2011

Oil prices may have stormed back into the headlines by crossing the ominous $100 a barrel threshold in recent weeks. But while this has happening the world’s largest oil and gas companies have been banging the drum for an altogether less newsworthy fuel–natural gas.

ExxonMobil, Royal Dutch Shell and now BG Group have been arguing that significant changes are afoot in the unglamorous world of natural gas that could have a big impact on patterns of energy consumption, carbon dioxide emissions and the balance of power in volatile energy markets. read more and its sister websites,,,,, and are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.
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