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Big Oil Could Be In Big Trouble

Screen Shot 2014-02-18 at 18.34.00By John Donovan

A number of current articles warn of falling oil prices. A zacks.com article says that oil prices have fallen below $100 to the lowest level this year and that natural gas has fared even worse. Nas.daq.com reports that the price of oil has plummeted, and that the fall is accelerating. It also points out that big oil has taken on $106 billion in new debt. A related article warns of $96 Billion of High-Risk Oil Megaprojects. The Russia/Ukraine crisis is partly responsible for the uncertainly and anxiety.

Royal Dutch Shell Plc .com News Roundup: 18 August 2014

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THE CORRUPT SULTAN OF BRUNEI – RECIPIENT OF SHELL WEDDING GIFT BRIBERY

Firstbiz. has published an article setting out 5 things it says you should know about the Sultan.

See “Meet Sultan of Brunei, the man willing to shell out more than $2 bn for Sahara’s hotels

Extract: “Ironically, the Sultan’s Beverly Hills Hotel and Dorchester Collection properties in the United States have been subject to a boycott by many, including Hollywood personalities, following the Sharia penal code — which levies harsh punishments like flogging, the severing of limbs, and death by stoning for homosexuals and adulterers — that was instituted in the country of Brunei in early May.” 

Royal Dutch Shell gave a $500,000 gift for a lavish Brunei royal wedding in September 2004. The Sultan must have been short of readies. Many would view such a large sum as a bribe. The Sultan is worth an estimated $20 billion and lives in an 1,800-room palace.

Screen Shot 2014-05-28 at 00.53.01ROYAL DUTCH SHELL PLANS TO REVIVE ARCTIC PLANS AFTER FIRST DEBACLE

Seeking Alpha reports that President Obama is closer than ever to imposing the first minimum standards for oil and gas activity in U.S. Arctic waters, as Royal Dutch Shell pursues permits that could allow it to resume drilling in the region next year. MORE

IRELAND – SHELL SPONSORSHIP BACKLASH

The Irish Times is still publishing articles about the “backlash” over Shell sponsorship of an Irish dance festival, which led to the organisers returning sponsorship funds to Shell. See “The ethical minefield of arts sponsorship” Shell has earned a bad reputation in Ireland as a result of the Shell led Corrib Gas Project, which is engulfed in controversy and scandal.

FRACKING

The Guardian has published an interesting article by Jeremy Leggett under the headline: “UK energy dependence – five hidden costs expose truth about tracking.” According to the article: “The shale boom is a bubble waiting to burst as economics of extraction falter and the trickle of bad environmental news starts to swell” MORE

CANADIAN OIL SANDS 

An article by Lauren Krugel, published by The Canadian Press claims  that “Some of the world’s costliest energy projects are in Alberta’s oilsands and some could be cancelled without higher oil prices, according to a new report by a London-based financial think-tank that focuses on climate risk. The study by the Carbon Tracker Initiative (CTI) highlighted 20 of the biggest projects around the world that need a minimum oil price of US$95 a barrel to be economically viable.” MORE

Roundup of Royal Dutch Shell News 16 August 2014

Screen Shot 2014-06-23 at 11.37.41SHELL’S USA FIRE SALE

The New York Times reports that the Blackstone Group, a private equity company, is paying Royal Dutch Shell $1.2 billion for a stake comprising more than 107,000 net acres in Louisiana. MORE

A related article by BusinessReport.com features a quote from Marvin Odum, president of Royal Dutch Shell’s U.S. division, Shell Oil Company. Marvin said in a statement: “We are adding highly attractive exploration acreage, where we have impressive well results in the Utica, and divesting our more mature, Pinedale and Haynesville dry gas positions.” MORE

The same news story is also covered by RTT News: Vine, Blackstone Energy Partners To Buy Shell’s Haynesville Assets For $1.2 Bln

BIDNESS ETC, is an innovative news based website founded by “a team of more than 100 financial wizards, musicians, rock stars, artists, singers, aspiring philosophers and tech geeks.” It reports that Rex Energy is paying Shell $120million for a 100% interest in Shell Western Exploration and Production Inc. in the Marcellus, Burkett and Utica shales in Pennsylvania and Ohio. MORE

The same new story is covered by Ohio.com: MORE

The disposals are also reported in a Reuters article which says “Shell, like many other global oil companies, is carrying out a broad cost-cutting drive aimed at boosting profits. Chief Executive Ben van Beurden is seeking to offload $15 billion-worth of assets by the end of 2015, including in North America.”

Also in the USA, a panel of three judges upheld a lower court’s dismissal of a contract suit against Shell Oil Co. by operators of its gas stations, saying a U.S. district judge had not abused his discretion in tossing the case after finding the plaintiffs deliberately destroyed evidence. MORE

SHELL’S AUSTRALIAN FIRE SALE 

Vitol completed its purchase of Shell’s downstream businesses. MORE 

RECENT ARTICLES PROVIDE AN OVERVIEW OF SHELL”S PERFORMANCE 

An article by Micheal Kaufman in BIDNESS ETC provides an overview on Shell’s performance this year, and analyzes if the company is on track to achieve targets set out at the start of the year: MORE

Seeking Alpha features an interesting related overview article by Ray Merola published under the headline: “New Shell CEO Takes Out The Trash.” It says: “First, van Beurden lost no time aiming to restructure parts of the business; first, focusing upon shoring Shell’s woeful performance in the North American energy fields, and second, divestiture of other weak assets.” 

According to citywire.co.uk, “Shell’s turnaround will continue to deliver”

A related Motley Fool article, in which concern is expressed about sanctions on Russia, asks: Is It Time To Sell Royal Dutch Shell Plc and BP plc?

SHELL’S WASHINGTON OIL-BY-RAIL PLAN 

Reuters reports that a Shell proposal to move by rail up to 60,000 barrels per day of North American crude to its Washington state refinery will not have to undergo a lengthy environmental review. MORE

Screen Shot 2014-04-04 at 09.49.25SHELL ARCTIC DRILLING

The battle to stop Shell drilling in the Arctic is still in progress. Law360 says that environmentalists have asked a US court to revoke the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement’s approval of two Royal Dutch Shell PLC units’ spill response plans for exploratory oil drilling in the Arctic Ocean. The environmental group coalition is seeking to vacate the U.S. Department of the Interior bureau’s approval of Shell Gulf of Mexico Inc. and Shell Offshore Inc. spill response plans for drilling in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas… MORE

Screen Shot 2014-04-19 at 10.07.44AUSTRALIA – PRELUDE FLOATING LIQUEFIED NATURAL GAS FACILITY 

UPI reports a part of the largest floating liquefied natural gas facility in the world is on the way to a South Korean shipyard. Shell said the turret module, part of the mooring system for the Prelude Floating Liquefied Natural Gas Facility, is on its way from Dubai to a shipyard in South Korea, where the entire FLNG is set for construction. MORE

SHELL NIGERIA

The Editorial Board of the New York Times has published an important article: Oil’s Devastating Legacy in Nigeria 

EXTRACT

“Three years after the United Nations Environment Program issued a comprehensive assessment of shocking levels of pollution in the oil-producing region of Ogoniland in Nigeria, little appears to have been done. The 2011 report said that it would take 30 years to repair the damage. Last week, Amnesty International joined other groups in issuing a damning follow-up by accusing the Nigerian government and the Shell Oil Company of essentially ignoring the entire problem.”

This Is Money reports that “Shell on brink of announcing multi-billion pound sale of four onshore oil blocks in Nigeria”

Extract

The sale of the four oilfields is expected to raise at least £2billion for SPDC, amid fierce competition for the assets. A separate source with knowledge of the bidding process said: ‘They [winning bidders] have paid massively over the odds.’

IGNORING CLIMATE CHANGE IS A RISKY BUSINESS

BreakingEnergy.com says that a report released in early July by The Carbon Tracker Initiative and Energy Transition Advisors suggests that up to $77 billion worth of Royal Dutch Shell’s investments in new fossil fuel projects could be stranded if new climate change policies are introduced, as some observers believe is inevitable. MORE

Royal Dutch Shell Plc .com News Round-up 12 August 2014

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A frosty reception for Shell sponsorship; Oil and Gas company debt soars to danger level; Shell a gigantic flea

By John Donovan

UK

The Telegraph City Diary column has commented on Shell’s embarrassment at arts sponsorship monies being returned to the  company in Ireland. “First the Antarctic, now Ireland. The list of countries where Royal Dutch Shell receives a frosty reception continues to lengthen. The energy major has been told that its sponsorship money for the Emerald Isle’s biggest folk festival, the Fleadh Cheoil na hEireann in Sligo, is no longer acceptable, after eco-campaigners kicked up a storm.”

The Telegraph has published an alarming article under the headline: “Oil and gas company debt soars to danger levels to cover shortfall in cash” It warns: “The world’s leading oil and gas companies are taking on debt and selling assets on an unprecedented scale to cover a shortfall in cash, calling into question the long-term viability of large parts of the industry.”

Related: “Saudi Arabia gas project has failed, admits Shell”: 05 Jul 2014

AUSTRALIA

An article published by The Gladstone Observer contains a memorable comment on Shell’s long-standing shareholding in Woodside Petroleum. “The fact is that it has been a mutually detrimental relationship according to the Woodside board, which regards Shell as a gigantic flea in the company’s ear.”

Nigeria

The Nigeria Sun newspaper has published an article about the failure of Shell and the Nigerian government to clean up severe environmental pollution arising from Shell’s activities in the Niger Delta. “A United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) detailed assessment of pollution in oil-producing areas of the region published in 2011 had earlier stated that it would take up to 30 years to clean up affected areas.”

Royal Dutch Shell News Roundup Monday 11 Aug 2014

Screen Shot 2014-02-10 at 16.29.29Rejection in Australia, Oil Spill Fire in Nigeria, Fire sale in the USA, Asbestos lawsuit in the UK

By John Donovan

AUSTRALIA

The Australian reports that a fortnight after Woodside Petroleum shareholders scuttled a $2.7 billion plan to remove Royal Dutch Shell from the company’s share register, Woodside has bought a 40% stake in a joint venture deep water exploration project off west Africa.

NORTH AMERICA

According to the FT, Shell is preparing to dispose of its 50 per cent stake in a Louisiana gasfield to Blackstone for $1.2bn, as the oil and gas group retreats from one of its souring investments in North America. Private equity group, Blackstone, is named as the likely purchaser.  The article contains reference to the “fix or divest” policy of Royal Dutch Shell CEO, Ben van Beurden in relation to Shell’s under performing North American upstream business.

RUSSIA/UKRAINE

A New York Times article says that even as Russia and the West keep raising the stakes in their economic sanctions battle, the one commodity that could matter most — Russian natural gas — seems still to be off limits. If correct, that will be a relief for Gazprom and its Sakhalin2 junior partner, Royal Dutch Shell.

NIGERIA

A Sahara Reporters article claim that a fire suspected to have been started by oil workers engaged by Shell on Sunday gutted a spill site on a Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) oil field in Ayambele and Kalaba communities in Yenagoa Local Government of Bayelsa State. Friends of the Earth is said to have condemned the act of burning spilled crude oil.

allAfrica.com is reporting an oil spill from a Shell pipeline in the Local Government Area of Rivers State. “Some members of the affected communities described the spill as massive, but, Shell said the volume of oil involved is yet to be ascertained.”

UK

The Liverpool Echo has reported that a former Shell employee, 67 year old Bill Jones, is suing Shell after he was allegedly exposed to deadly asbestos dust on a North Sea rig more than 40 years ago. Mr Jones claims: “The dust I was exposed to was in such great volumes that, often after emptying sacks of Flosal, the room became a swirling mass of dust as the powder billowed up. My colleagues and I looked like snowmen within minutes, we could not help but get completely covered by it.” No doubt fearful of further claims, Shell declined to comment on the case.

Greenpeace has continued its campaign against Shell’s Arctic drilling plans and Shell’s tie-up with Lego by mounting a protest  on Saturday outside Bluewater’s LEGO store, calling for an end to Lego’s relationship with Shell.

OSSL whistleblower allegations against Shell and the Irish Police

Screen Shot 2014-06-16 at 17.34.44By John Donovan

The OSSL email campaign against Royal Dutch Shell and various parties including the Garda, who accepted ‘sweeteners’ from Shell dispensed by OSSL, continues unabated, 7 days a week.

OSSL acted as a “Mr Fixit” on behalf of Shell in relation to the controversial long delayed and miles over budget Corrib Gas Project in Ireland, before falling out over money. 

As I understand the situation, the OSSL campaign has two objectives.

One is to expose the truth after a series of cover-ups by the Irish Police and Shell.

The other objective is to obtain further payment from Shell. In this connection, Shell says that a full and final settlement of contractual matters took place in 2012 and a Settlement Agreement was signed by OSSL in the presence of its legal advisers.

Important evidence has recently been supplied to me in relation to both issues.

As a consequence, I want to make it plain that my interest is solely in exposing the truth about the long running scandal. 

Twister B.V. by name, Twister by nature?

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Screen Shot 2014-06-22 at 17.47.17By John Donovan

Knowing from personal experience the track record of Royal Dutch Shell in stealing ideas, I must say that I am staggered by the audacity of Shell in trying to draw (trick?) inventors into entrusting the ruthless unprincipled oil giant with their brainchild.  The scheme (scam?) is run in various guises, including Shell GameChanger,  Shell Ideas360 and Shell Innovation Challenge. Shell is even offering substantial cash prizes as an enticement. See current example (above) from Shell Australia.

We recently published an article about the Newton Research Partners IP theft case against Shell involving Twister B.V., a company set up by Royal Dutch Shell.

Shell in the US courts again for alleged theft of trade secrets: 20 June 2014

I have now obtained from the US courts a Petition filed by Twister B.V. in relation to the discovery process.

Discovery is the part of the pre-trial process whereby the parties to the litigation are obliged under penalty of law to exchange all documents in their possession, custody or control, which are in any way relevant to the case. This applies to any document that may contain information that would enable a party either to advance his own case or damage the case of his opponent.

You may have read a John Grisham novel, or seen a movie whereby one side in a case about to come to trial, tries to hide vital information by burying it in a mountain of documents, most of which have no connection with the matters before the Court. The film “Class Action” starring Gene Hackman provided a classic example of the “paper blizzard” ploy. It is a tactic used by Shell.

Some extracts from the Petition filed by Twister containing a STATEMENT OF THE CASE

This is a misappropriation of trade secrets case brought by Newton Research Partners, LP (“Newton”) against Shell Exploration & Production Company (“SEPCO”), Shell Oil Company, Shell Technology Ventures, Inc., Shell International Exploration and Production, Inc., and Twister, a private limited liability company in The Netherlands. See R5. Newton alleges that SEPCO misappropriated its trade secrets, and shared them with Twister (who Newton alleges to be in a joint venture with SEPCO) and that Twister is marketing and selling those trade secrets in the form of its Twister Supersonic Separator. Relator Twister is not a Texas resident. It is a private limited liability company incorporated under the laws of the Netherlands. R3-Ex. B:~2. Its principal and only place of business is in the town of Rijswijk in the Netherlands.  Twister is basically a single product start-up company, with all of its employees engaged in trying to make Twister a commercially viable company.  At its essence, the litigation between Newton, SEPCO and Twister is about Twister’s only product – the Twister Supersonic Separator – and who invented the technology used in that product.

I note that Twister describes itself in the Petition as a “small Netherlands Company”. It would have been more honest to describe itself as a small company founded and financed by the biggest company by revenue in the entire world (RDS Plc ranked No 1 in 2013).

Basically, Twister was trying to force Newton Research Partners, an American company, to travel all the way to Europe to inspect discovery documents at Twisters HQ offices stored in “16 four/five drawer cabinets.” Apparently the idea was disclosed to Shell in the USA and Shell chose to pass the confidential information to Shell in Europe, in breach of previously agreed confidentiality terms.

Seems to me to be a classic example of a company attempting to pervert the discovery process by trying to put obstacles in the way of gaining proper access to relevant discovery information. In this case trying to force Newton Research Partners into making an extended expensive overseas trip involving spending many days in a hostile setting – the HQ of the company being accused of IP theft.

The last time I sued Shell for IP theft I had a very similar experience with their discovery machinations. I had to commute from Bury St Edmunds to London every day (or stay at a hotel) to inspect discovery documents at the extremely hostile premises of the London law firm acting for Shell. A lawyer representing Shell was present all of the time every day while I checked the documents – countless boxes of documents, with most of the content having no possible relationship to my case. Shell has never denied that this was an attempt to bury evidence. I was very patient and have a good memory. This was vital because information was often not together in one box, but interspersed over thousands of pages in a jigsaw of evidence, spread across different boxes. Consequently, if I found something interesting, which potentially tied in with something seen earlier, perhaps even days previously, I had to search back through endless boxes to try to assemble the pieces into coherent evidence.

I am not a lawyer, but it seems from the court documents that the relevant Court of Appeals ruled against twister on the discovery issues and awarded costs against them.  If Shell or Twister has any later ruling on this subject, I will be happy to post that information here.

INFORMATION RECEIVED FROM A RELIABLE SOURCE

Within Shell, Matthias Bichsel is credited with the establishment of a group called the “Competitive Intelligence Unit” (CIU) which was nothing more than a group within the company dedicated to industrial espionage. It was perhaps this group whose activities led to the case involving the “Twister” technology. There are plenty of references to the CIU on the web too, and it may be useful to people involved in “discovery” to identify people within this group. While gathering intelligence on competitors is normal, there is a suspicion that this group did not always operate within the law.

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The assault on Lego

Screen Shot 2014-08-08 at 14.33.21By John Donovan

The Greenpeace led assault on Lego continues with an article published today by The Guardian newspaper under the headline: “How Lego lost its innocence”

Extract

“A co-promotion with Lego is a lucrative PR stunt for Shell. But as Greenpeace is keen to point out, Shell is an appalling choice of partner, not least because of its controversial plans to extract oil from under the melting Arctic region.”

It is one in a series of recent Guardian articles highlighting the Lego/Shell connection in relationship to Shell’s Arctic drilling plans.

Interesting to note that thus far there is not a single mention of the campaign on the Wikipedia “lego” article

Perhaps like the Wikipedia article on Royal Dutch Shell, any critical information is removed by those paid to protect brand reputation. 

ENDS

The Lego logo is courtesy of Wikipedia Commons.

Royal Dutch Shell slashing North Sea jobs

Screen Shot 2014-02-10 at 16.29.29By John Donovan

250 full time Shell employees and contractor staff in Aberdeen will be culled over the next year. 

According to a Shell spokesperson:

Shell is reorganising its operations to better serve the needs of its offshore facilities and to build a stronger long-term business in the North Sea. Following staff consultation, Shell expects to reduce employee and contractor headcount by a total of around 250 positions over the next year. Revisions to the onshore organisation will be implemented by the end of 2014. Shell is determined to ensure that it continues to deliver safe, competitive operations in its North Sea portfolio and maximises value from its operated assets.

RELATED

Shell to shed 250 jobs

Energy giant shell is set to cut 250 jobs at its North Sea headquarters.

Aberdeen workers hit as Shell axes 250 jobs

Shell to cut 250 North Sea jobs

President Obama Scuttling the good ship UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

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Screen Shot 2014-08-07 at 15.55.11By John Donovan

I am a UK citizen and therefore have no say in US politics. 

I am just an observer who has travelled extensively in the USA over many decades and as a result grew to love America and its people. 

President Obama seems like a thoroughly nice man with a lovely family.

That’s the positive bit.

Some fanatical right-wingers have claimed that he is not a US Citizen.

Some have suggested he is a Muslim hell bent on the destruction of America.

All ridiculous, but the truth is that his misguided liberal/socialist/pacifist policies seem to be having a far more destructive impact on the USA than any terrorist group. 

Immigration is out of control.

Russia is out of control.

The US Internal Revenue Service is out of control. 

The US economy remains troubled, with a huge ever-growing deficit.

Obamacare is now seen by the majority of Americans as a wrong move in the first place, which was then incompetently executed. 

And there is one scandal after another; Operation Fast and Furious, the Benghazi shambles and cover-up, the Veterans health admin debacle and the IRS being used for political purposes. All occurring while the President is preoccupied either with touring overseas apologising for America’s past conduct, playing golf, vacationing, or engaged in political fundraising. 

The man doesn’t seem to have a care in the world, while we all watch the good ship UNITED STATES OF AMERICA slowing sinking in power, prestige and respect. That is not good for the freedom loving people of this world. 

The USA still remains the sole superpower, but not for much longer and its decline will continue and perhaps even accelerate if it remains on the current downwards trajectory.

In frightening contrast, China is growing in economic and military strength at breakneck speed, as is its territorial ambitions. 

RELATED 

Obama, With Reluctance, Returns to Action in Iraq: New York Times newspaper 8 August 2014

Fear of ‘Another Benghazi’ Drove White House to Airstrikes in Iraq: New York Times 8 August 2014

Shell’s unwelcome sponsorship of the arts

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Screen Shot 2014-08-06 at 15.18.48By John Donovan

Earlier this year campaigners and climate activists applauded the end of the Shell Classic International series at the South Bank Centre in London. 

SEE: Campaigners celebrate end of Shell’s Southbank sponsorship

Protestors, including from the Shell OUT SOUNDS organisation and PlatformLondon.org strongly objected to what has been aptly described as “oil-branded concerts.”

All take particular exception to Shell’s atrocious track record in Nigeria.

Screen Shot 2014-08-06 at 15.26.32Today The Irish Times has published an article reporting that the Shell to Sea campaign group in Ireland intends to mount a public protest about Shell’s sponsorship of the largest traditional Irish music Festival, “Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann.”  

The festival is due to be held in Sligo from the 10th to 17th August and is expected to attract an attendance of up to a quarter of a million people.

Shell to Sea claim that the Irish President Michael D Higgins has been placed in an awkward position of opening the event, bearing in mind that he has  previously spoken out against the controversial Shell led Corrib Gas project in Ireland.

UPDATE 17:10 Wednesday 6 August 2014

The Irish Times published an article this evening reporting that The organisers of Fleadh Cheoil na hEireann have bowed to pressure and rejected sponsorship of the annual traditional music festival by oil giant, Shell.”

SEE: Fleadh bows to pressure and gives money back to Shell

UPDATE Saturday 9 August 2014

SEE: If the Fleadh can go ahead as planned without Shell’s money, why did the organisers seek the sponsorship in the first place?

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Russia Sanctions Failing to Stanch Energy Deals With Japan

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By John Donovan

Nato says that Russia has amassed 20,000 combat-ready troops on the border of eastern Ukraine.

The US and the EU have stepped up sanction measures on Russia moving from targeted to sector sanctions. 

Unfortunately for Royal Dutch Shell its current business and future prospects depend on maintaining good relations with Putin.

Hence the bootlicking by Shell CEO Ben van Beurden when he met with Putin following the Russian invasion and annexation of Crimea. 

The Sakhalin II project in which Shell used to be the majority stakeholder still remains an important asset to the oil and gas giant. Sanctions may yet impact on Sakhalin II.

Extracts from a Bloomberg News article by Chou Hui Hong, Anna Shiryaevskaya and Tsuyoshi Inajima published 6 August 2014

Japan will freeze assets of individuals or groups involved in increasing instability in Ukraine and in the annexation of Crimea, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said July 28. Russia’s foreign ministry said July 29 that Japan’s new sanctions are “unfriendly, shortsighted” and will hurt bilateral relations.

Russia’s Sakhalin facility near Japan’s northern island of Hokkaido provides almost 9.5 percent of Japan’s gas, according to Royal Dutch Shell Plc, which owns a quarter of the project.

Russian President Putin’s continued support for separatists in eastern Ukraine has prompted the U.S. and European Union to impose restrictions on the operations of some banks and energy companies in an effort to isolate the Russian economy.

FULL BLOOMBERG ARTICLE

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SCREENSHOTS FROM A VIDEO PUBLISHED BY RT.com on 18 April 2014 

Russia’s annexation of Crimea took place in March 2014. Shell’s collaboration is being seen as a hugely important event to be fully exploited for propaganda purposes by Putin. 

Greenpeace attacks Lego in second anti-Shell partnership video

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By John Donovan

With its usual determination, Greenpeace continues to mount a sustained innovative campaign against the plans of Royal Dutch Shell to drill in Arctic waters. 

It is worth remembering that Shell has in the past used dirty tricks, including undercover activity by its paid spies/infiltrators, in an attempt to combat and undermine Greenpeace.

See: MI6 ‘firm’ spied on green groups” 

Shell still has its own internal army of spies now operating under the name of Shell Global Security (previously as Corporate Affairs Security). I am sure they continue to closely monitor Greenpeace (and me). 

Extract from a related current article by John McCarthy published by the drum.com 5 August 2014

Sara Ayech, Arctic campaigner at Greenpeace, said: “Lego’s promotional deal with Shell is really damaging, because it helps Shell pretend it’s a caring, family-friendly company. In reality, it’s not. Shell wants to drill in the Arctic. But a spill there would be impossible to clean up and the only reason they can even drill in the Arctic is because climate change is melting the ice. That’s something that threatens all kids around the world.”

FULL ARTICLE

RELATED

ASRC, North Slope Village, Shell announce offshore Alaska venture

ANCHORAGE, Alaska – Arctic Slope Regional Corp. (ASRC) and six North Slope village corporations have joined to create a company known as the Arctic Inupiat Offshore LLC (AIO). AIO and Shell Gulf of Mexico Inc. have entered a binding agreement that allows AIO the option to acquire an interest in Shell’s acreage and activities on its Chukchi Sea leases. This interest will be managed by AIO.

FULL ARTICLE

Shell connection?: Garda laptop found in a Dutch brothel

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By John Donovan

The Irish Independent newspaper has published an article reporting that a worker at a Dutch brothel discovered a bag apparently containing “a laptop and documents as well as an “insignia” that allegedly identified the owner as being a member of An Garda Siochana”  - the Irish Police force. 

I note that comments have already been posted on the article raising the subject of the free alcohol given by Royal Dutch Shell to the Garda as part of Shell sponsored corruption surrounding the Corrib Gas Project. 

The corruption charges came from a supplier company working for Shell EP Ireland: OSSL. 

I seem to recall that an officer from the Garda Ombudsman Commission was recently in the Netherlands attending a meeting at the HQ of Royal Dutch Shell Plc in The Hague, in connection with the OSSL allegations.  

The Hague is 52 minutes driving time from the attractions of Amsterdam. 

I have no idea whether there is any connection.

Is an officer from the Garda Ombudsman Commission a member of the Garda? 

The Ombudsman Commission investigation mistakingly concluded that there was no evidence to support OSSL allegations. Their verdict was in line with cover-up tactics already used by the Garda and Shell. 

It is only a matter of time before the whole rotten scandal, involving senior Garda officers, is exposed. 

RELATED EMAIL?

On 1 Apr 2014, at 10:03, “Johan Groenewald” <[email protected]> wrote:

Dear OSSL,

The investigation is still ongoing.

One of my investigators are in The Hague, Netherlands today to interview Frances van Dam in relation to Shell’s internal investigation.

Garda members to be interviewed on Thursday in Belmullet.

Regards,

Johan Groenewald
Senior Investigating Officer
Garda Ombudsman Commission

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RELATED ARTICLES

Department of Justice had ‘shared culture of secrecy with Garda’, report finds: The Irish Times 29 July 2014

Purcell profile: civil servant could not escape scandal that engulfed policing and justice: The Irish Times 29 July 2014

Curious about the wording of Shell’s announcement of Bichsel’s departure..?

FROM A REGULAR CONTRIBUTOR 

I’m curious about the wording of Shell’s announcement of Bichsel’s departure….

The announcement focusses almost entirely on Brekelmans, and simply says that Matthias Bichsel (right) is leaving after 34 years – hardly a glowing valedictory for the person who has been number two in Shell (worldwide) for the past few years.

Surely some words of thanks for Bichsel’s years of sterling service and achievements at Shell should have been in order? Or perhaps not, as the case may be.

RELATED ARTICLES

Harry Brekelmans joins Royal Dutch Shell Plc Executive Committee: 31 July 2014

Is Shell Executive Director Matthias Bichsel Trustworthy?: 27 February 2013

Harry Brekelmans To Become Shell Exec VP For Strategy, Planning: 10 September 2009

The grief of Ben van Beurden

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Screen Shot 2014-02-10 at 16.29.29Extracts from a Daily Mail/This is MONEY” article by Rob Davies published 31 July 2014 under the headline: “Energy lift boosts shares in Royal Dutch Shell and BG Group after both post strong second quarter results”

Boss Ben van Beurden has vowed to sell underperforming assets and be more selective about spending, after beginning his tenure in January with the firm’s first profit warning in a decade. Van Beurden said Shell was ‘less exposed than some of our rivals’ to the impact of sanctions on Russia after the downing of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 over Ukraine. But he focused on the emotional impact on Shell, which lost four staff and eight members of their families. ‘As a Dutchman, of course, I grieve for the many compatriots who lost their lives in this crash,’ he said. ‘Then, as CEO of Shell, I grieve together with the other 92,000 Shell staff for the colleagues we lost, together with so many of their family members.’

FULL ARTICLE

Shell says its underperforming European refineries to get no mercy

Screen Shot 2014-02-10 at 16.29.29Extract from Reuters article published Thursday 31 July 2014

(Reuters) – Anglo Dutch oil company Royal Dutch Shell will show no mercy to underperforming oil refineries in Europe as it seeks to improve returns, its chief executive said on Thursday.

FULL ARTICLE

Sanctions: Bloomberg warns of ‘DefCon 5′ reprisal by Russia on Royal Dutch Shell

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By John Donovan

This morning the oil giant Royal Dutch Shell Plc announced its second quarter results.

In subsequent news coverage, Bloomberg commentators said they were stunned by the lack of comment by Shell on the risk of reprisals by Russia to the recent announcement of EU sanctions targeting the Russian  oil and gas industry.

Ryan Chilcote of Bloomberg raised the prospect of what he described as a Def Con 5 reprisal by Putin seizing Shell assets – see screenshot.

Extract

July 31 (Bloomberg) — Bloomberg’s Ryan Chilcote reviews second-quarter results from Shell and looks at the potential negative impact of their exposure to Russia. He speaks on “The Pulse.”

ACCESS TO RELEVANT BLOOMBERG VIDEO

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RELATED: Energy Companies Rethinking Russia After New Round of Sanctions: The New York Times 30 Jul 2014

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