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Posts from ‘September, 2006’

The Observer: What is the greenest way to get around?

For those who prefer not to cycle or walk, the eco answer to getting from A to B is to mix and match, says Lucy Siegle

Sunday October 1, 2006

I concede that the clean, green mobility charms of the push bike won’t seduce everyone. Unfortunately nobody has come up with such an easy, cheap and benign means of getting from A to B (other than walking), although the conundrum continues to occupy the world’s best minds.

Conversely, millions approach the topic completely mindlessly, which explains why transport accounts for 60 per cent of all CO2 emissions, and emissions from private cars in the UK are projected to reach 88.2m tonnes of CO2 (MtC) by 2010. The worst opprobrium, as ever, should be saved for those who have undone any slight fuel efficiency gains by swanning about in gas guzzlers (formalise your distaste at www.stopurban4x4s.org.uk).

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Radio New Zealand: Pohokura gas field now producing commercial quantities

Posted at 2:37pm on 01 Oct 2006

The operators of the Pohokura gas field in Taranaki say it is producing commercial quantities of gas for the first time.

Shell Exploration says gas and condensate are now flowing from three completed onshore wells through a production station at Motunui near New Plymouth.

A spokesman, Ajit Bansal, says it is a significant milestone for the companies developing the field as a joint venture, and for their customers.

The companies are: Shell, Todd and OMV. OMV is an Austrian gas and oil company.

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Huffington Post: Vladimir Inspired by Hugo’s Oil Drama. Should We Be Watching?

By Raymond J. Learsy

This April the Chavez government seized oil fields operated by two European oil giants- Italy’s ENI and France’s Total.

This, after the two companies declined to convert their contracts to joint ventures with the state. “These two multinational companies resist adjusting to our law. Our sovereignty isn’t under negotiation”, bellowed Rafael Ramirez Venezuela’s oil minister.

Chevron and Shell and fourteen other companies did agree to the terms giving Venezuela’s state oil company, PDVSA, at least a 60 percent stake. 

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Neftegaz.RU: Energy Ministers From 11 Countries Say Russian Energy Policy Raises Risks for Europe

Eleven energy ministers warned of rising political and commercial risks to Europe’s energy markets as President Vladimir Putin issued a warning to “unconscientious” investors, Agence France Presse reported on Thursday.

“The ministers note the recent developments in energy markets and the ever increasing potential risks of a political and commercial nature,” the 11 Black Sea-region ministers said.

“The reliability of access to energy (is) subject at this stage to challenges and threats of both a short-term and long-term nature,” they said in a statement.

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Petroleum News: Clash of Canadian heavyweights

Leading producers do battle over TransCanada plans to switch gas pipeline to oil sands; disagree over outlook for gas supplies

Gary Park
For Petroleum News

In the red corner we have, among others, EnCana, Shell Canada, Nexen and Devon Canada.

And in the blue corner, ConocoPhillips Canada, Canadian Natural Resources and Suncor Energy.

It’s one of those very rare showdowns in the Canadian oil patch.

At stake is the future of almost 500 miles of natural gas pipeline in Canada which has many of the largest oil and gas producers locked in combat and, in the process, feuding over the outlook for Western Canadian gas supplies.

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Ogoni author Ben Wuloo Ikari argues that Shell should be classified as a terrorist organisation

Introduction by Alfred Donovan.

Robert Aouad, a guest columnist in a U.S. College publication, recently took issue with a suggestion that Shell Oil should be included in a list of terrorist organisations: the following is an extract from his article published on 22 September 2006.
 
EXTRACT: As for Shell Oil, who you suggested should be included in a list of terrorist organizations with extremist groups like Hamas, I have trouble equating an unfortunate oil spill with a terrorist attack. Shell Oil did not set out to Nigeria with 56 million gallons of oil to intentionally spill it onto the farmland of the Ogonis. It was a very unfortunate incident indeed, but definitely not a terrorist attack. Furthermore, how do we expect Shell Oil to get into areas such as these for cleanup when the volatile Nigerian military government and the protesting Ogoni people are at each other’s throats?

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The Times: Oil explorer that struck water in the desert

September 30, 2006 
 
WATER is vital to the recovery of oil — it is used to force the black liquid from hard-to-reach parts. Water is also essential to the survival of the 2.5 million people living in the Thar Desert in Rajasthan, India, the world’s most populous desert.

Cairn Energy, the Scottish mining company, combined its own search for natural resources in the desert with a water supply project that has received plaudits in human rights circles. 
 
While mining its 7,000 sq km site, Cairn developed an excellent knowledge of the region’s water table, which it passed on to the Indian Government. The information is currently being used to sink wells for local people. The company also donated 600 tanks so that women do not have to carry water as far as before.

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Financial Times: Sakhalin-2 fell foul of zealous official

By Arkady Ostrovsky
Published: September 29 2006 03:00 | Last updated: September 29 2006 03:00

What do a Soviet pop diva, small country cottage owners and one of the world’s largest oil and gas projects have in common? The answer is simple. They have all become a target for a mid-level official who has built up an image as a fearless defender of the environment against the rich and powerful.

Oleg Mitvol, deputy head of Russia’s inspectorate for the use of natural resources, with a staff of two, is a colourful figure. A former entrepreneur in chemicals and the media, he earned himself a reputation in some business circles as a corporate raider. He was a business partner of Boris Berezovskybefore turning against the former oligarch who went into self-imposed exile in London. In 2004 he surprised many when he joined the civil service as an environmental inspector.

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Buenos Aires Herald: Shell shock

Saturday 30 September 2006
 
HERALD STAFF
 
The successful government pressure on Shell to suspend its new V-Power diesel pending government authorization of the product sets an alarming precedent for any market economy — would Alexander Graham Bell have felt obliged to seek government authorization before inventing the telephone or the Wright brothers to invent the aeroplane?

The government’s motivation for suppressing Shell’s new product is obviously its anxiety to tame fuel prices, suspecting this fuel innovation of being a backdoor price increase (V-power cost 15 more cents a litre on the basis of upgrading purity by 10 percent).

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Daily Yomiuri: Russia’s economic roulette: Gazprom wants more than 50% of Sakhalin II

Saturday 30 September 2006
Yoshikuni Sugiyama

The government compiled in May an energy policy outline titled “New National Energy Strategy,” with the aim of increasing its ratio of independent oil development. However, its plan has already taken a battering thanks to a unilateral Russian ruling.

The Russian Natural Resources Ministry has decided to cancel the permit for the Sakhalin-2 natural gas development project off the coast of Sakhalin Island, citing problems with environmental conservation.

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Banking Business Review: French loyalty cards: S’Miles better for Shell

28th September 2006
By Anne Marie Davis

Groupe Caisse d’Epargne has joined Shell in S’Miles, a major syndicated retail loyalty card scheme in France. The French retail bank will represent a welcome addition to the scheme for Shell, increasing the number of card touch points for its customers in a market where an independent loyalty card may not be the best route for the fuel retailer.

Groupe Caisse d’Epargne bank serves 26 million customers in France and has one of the largest distribution networks, with around 4,300 branches and 5,900 ATMs across the country. Now that it has joined the S’Miles scheme, members of the bank’s Satellis service will be offered free membership to the scheme.

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Inter Press Service: Sakhalin II brings prostitution, human trafficking, poverty, HIV/AIDS…

Headline: Social Setbacks as Big Oil Expands Pipelines

Emad Mekay

WASHINGTON, Sep 29 (IPS) – Predominantly foreign male workers who relocated to build massive oil and gas projects, combined with feeble gender policies, have brought  and greater burdens for local communities around those projects, new research finds.

This array of problems was found at two of the world’s largest pipeline projects, the 3.2-billion-dollar Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC) and Russia’s 20-billion-dollar Sakhalin II.

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The Idaho Observer: Ruthless Exploiters, Inc.: A little poverty never hurt anybody

SEPTEMBER 2006

EXTRACT: According to an article written for Amnesty International: “It’s 10 years since the Nigerian Government executed the well-known Ogoni writer and human rights campaigner Ken Saro-Wiwa. But little has changed for the people of the Niger Delta, reports Seth Jordan…

“…Oil was discovered in the Ogoni region in the late 1950s by the Royal Dutch/Shell Group….by the 1990s an estimated US $30 billion worth of oil had already been extracted, and oil revenues accounted for over 98 per cent of Nigeria’s foreign exchange earnings; the 550,000 local farmers and fishermen who inhabited the coastal land had received little except a ravaged environment. Once fertile farmland had been destroyed by uncontrolled pollution, and virtually all fish and wildlife had vanished. Only a handful of local people were employed by the oil companies or benefited economically in any way….

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ShellNews.net: hardly surprising Putin is questioning the viability of Sakhalin II

29 September 2006

Expert comments on the Sakhalin II situation by a Shell Insider…

The costs of Sakhalin have doubled, so the payback time is approximately doubled. If 2013 is the new estimate for breakeven, based on a start up in 2008 and $22bn costs, then it is fair to assume that the date should have been 2009, based on $10bn costs and start-up in 2007 – as per the PSA.

(1) Apart from the $12bn in extra costs to be paid by the Russians (how much of this is Shell “overhead”?) an NPV calculation shows that the value of the future income stream due to the four year delay, and assuming a discount rate of 12% (typical for upstream E&P projects) is reduced by 60%.

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The Russia Journal: Sakhalin Energy violated pipeline route plan – ecology watchdog

Posted By Newsroom On 29th September 2006 @ 10:15 In Home, Economy, Companies,

YUZHNO-SAKHALINSK – A stretch of a pipeline in the Sakhalin II energy project has been illegally laid through the territory of a national preserve, Russia’s environmental watchdog said Friday.

Oleg Mitvol, the deputy head of the Federal Service for the Oversight of Natural Resources, who is currently leading a probe into the project on the island of Sakhalin, said part of the Sakhalin II pipeline near the village of Sovetskoye passed through the Zubrovy nature preserve in violation with the original route plan.

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Bloomberg: Chevron’s Gorgon Venture Design Work to Finish in `Few’ Months

By Angela Macdonald-Smith

Sept. 29 (Bloomberg) — Chevron Corp. said design work on the $10.4 billion Gorgon liquefied natural gas venture, which has been delayed, is due for completion in the “next few months” in advance of an investment decision in 2007.

The number of contractors working on the project is set to fall over the next few weeks as the initial engineering and design work nears completion, Chevron said today in an e-mail from the San Ramon, California-based company’s Perth office in Western Australia. Exxon Mobil Corp. and Royal Dutch Shell Plc have stakes in the venture.

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RosBusinessConsulting: Sakhalin Energy may face criminal charges

RBC, 29.09.2006, Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk 13:35:26.

Sakhalin Energy illegally changed the route of its oil and gas pipelines to pass through a state wildlife reserve, Oleg Mitvol, the deputy chief of the Russian environmental watchdog Rosprirodnadzor, told journalists following his trip to inspect Sakhalin-2 project construction sites. He said that according to the project’s plan, the pipelines were supposed to bypass the Zubrovy reserve near Sovetskoye village.

As the pipeline has now been laid straight through the environmentally protected site, the change of route can be deemed a criminal offense. After additional inspections at the disputed site, materials will be submitted to the General Prosecutor’s Office to launch criminal proceedings.

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Expansion Management: Shell To Make Major Expansion Project in Singapore

SINGAPORE (September 29, 2006) — World-scale petrochemical facility will be a major provider of raw materials in Asia.  

Singapore’s petrochemicals industry has attracted one of its biggest construction projects to date from international chemicals and energy giant, Royal Dutch Shell plc.

In late July, Shell, which enjoys a local presence dating back to the 19th century, announced its biggest investment yet in the Republic. Named Shell Eastern Petrochemicals Complex (SEPC), the new integrated refinery and petrochemicals project will be threefold, and upon completion by 2010, will serve as a crucial raw materials provider to the Asian region.

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Globe & Mail: Halt urged for Shell project in Russia

Minister denies environmental complaints are a ruse to obtain a stake in Sakhalin
ALEX NICHOLSON

Associated Press

MOSCOW — Russia’s environmental watchdog has called for pipe-laying work to be halted at a Royal Dutch Shell PLC-led liquefied natural gas project on Russia’s far eastern Sakhalin Island, even as the country’s Foreign Minister says problems could be resolved through dialogue.

“We want criminal cases for every destroyed tree or damaged river,” Oleg Mitvol, deputy head of Russia’s state environmental agency Rosprirodnadzor, said, according to Interfax news agency. “If the criminal cases are opened for everything, the company will read the Criminal Code, come to its senses and stop the barbaric activity.”

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The Russia Journal: Battle continues over Sakhalin-2

September 29, 2006

YUZHNO-SAKHALINSK – Using oil pipelines within the framework of the Sakhalin-2 project could lead to an environmental disaster, Oleg Mitvol, Deputy Director of Russia’s Federal Service for Environmental Supervision (Rosprirodnadzor), said on Thursday after inspecting the construction of gas and oil pipelines near the Sovetskoye village. He said Rosprirodnadzor would send the results of its examination to the Prosecutor’s Office. He did not elaborate on the nature of the possible damage.

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St Petersburg Times: Shelling Out For the Environment

Issue #1208(74), Friday, September 29, 2006

Bloomberg: YUZHNO-SAKHALINSK — Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s Sakhalin-2 oil and gas project should stop building pipelines and resolve the environmental damage it has caused, said Oleg Mitvol, deputy head of Russia’s environmental inspectorate.”We will do everything to make the company stop work and pay for the environmental damage,” Mitvol, sitting at a table flanked by local and international environmentalists, said Thursday in Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, the capital of Sakhalin Island. Mitvol yesterday said his inspectorate may assess that damage at more than $50 billion.

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RIA Novosti: Sakhalin Energy violated pipeline route plan – ecology watchdog

11:36 | 29/ 09/ 2006 

YUZHNO-SAKHALINSK, September 29 (RIA Novosti) – A stretch of a pipeline in the Sakhalin II energy project has been illegally laid through the territory of a national preserve, Russia’s environmental watchdog said Friday.

Oleg Mitvol, the deputy head of the Federal Service for the Oversight of Natural Resources, who is currently leading a probe into the project on the island of Sakhalin, said part of the Sakhalin II pipeline near the village of Sovetskoye passed through the Zubrovy nature preserve in violation with the original route plan.

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Lloyds List: Shell Marine sets out to syphon away fuel supply and quality risks

By: Concern over security issues, writes Jamie Dale in Singapore, Lloyds List
Published: Sep 29, 2006

SHELL Marine Products is paving the way to ease shipowners’ risk in a market thought to have an overcapacity of vessels in trade today, raising concerns over fuel supply security.

With financing made easier, thanks to low interest rates and a continuing growth from China and India, shipbuilders have enjoyed a surge in orders for newbuilds.

Loh Wai Kiew, chief executive officer and vice president of Shell, estimates the market has an overcapacity of 200 vessels in today’s trade, with little scrapping planned and a greater focus on the Asian market.

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The Scotsman: Russia targets Shell over environmental damage

Friday 29 September 2006

A RUSSIAN official stepped up attacks on Shell’s vast $20 billion Sakhalin energy project in Russia’s far east, saying Moscow wanted damages for every destroyed tree or damaged river.

http://business.scotsman.com/utilities.cfm?id=1440682006

The Wall Street Journal: Oil News Roundup: September 28, 2006 5:05 p.m.

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL ONLINE
September 28, 2006 5:05 p.m.

Crude-oil futures continued their recent volatile trade, rising as high as $64 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange before falling below $63 after OPEC officials quashed speculation the group was cutting production to tighten supply. Here is Thursday’s roundup of oil and energy news.

* * *
IRAQ OUT $16B: Iraq’s most important moneymaker — its oil industry — lost $16 billion in potential foreign sales over two years to insurgent attacks, criminals and bad equipment, a secret U.S. audit says. Iraq has the world’s third-highest proven reserves. But oil production slipped after the 2003 invasion, and the country has struggled to resume production to prewar levels. It is estimated that, in 2005, oil exports earned the country about $26 billion.

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Dow Jones Newswires: Shell Exec Outlines Hope, Barriers In Enhanced Oil Methods

Shell Exec Outlines Hope, Barriers In Enhanced Oil Methods

HOUSTON (Dow Jones)–Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RDSB.LN) is experimenting with techniques to boost recovery from older reserves by 10%, but the campaign poses new technological challenges for producers, Shell Vice President John Barry said Thursday. 

Barry, speaking on a conference call with reporters, described three methods that Shell hopes will enable it to boost recoveries. At present, Shell recovers about 35% of the oil in a given field, but hopes to raise that amount by 10% with these techniques. 

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Western People (Ireland): Poll shows strong support for Rossport Five

THE NUACHT RTE/TNS mrbi poll indicates strong support for the Rossport Five and for locating the Corrib Gas terminal at sea.

Six in ten people felt the gas terminal should be located offshore with just one quarter supporting the existing Bellanaboy option, RTE Nuacht reveals this morning (Tue).

The offshore alternative has strongest support among those aged under 49 years, and those residing in the Castlebar/ Ballinrobe/ Claremorris and West-port/Belmullet areas.

A breakdown by percentages show, 61 per cent for offshore; 23 per cent for Bellanaboy; 7 per cent don’t mind either way; 4 per cent, shouldn’t go ahead at all, and 5 per cent with no opinion.

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The Independent: Russia says Shell facing $50bn Sakhalin bill

By Andrew Osborn in Moscow
Published: 29 September 2006

Shell is facing growing uncertainty over the future of its Russian Sakhalin-2 oil and gas project after a senior official yesterday called for construction work to be halted over “barbaric” damage to the environment which he claimed it would cost $50bn (£27bn) to put right.

The Kremlin has also set its sights on BP’s Russian venture, TNK-BP, with a director of the state-controlled Gazprom saying the energy giant was interested in buying BP’s local partners out.

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The Charleston Gazette: Pensions: Tainted investments

September 29, 2006 

EARLIER this year, West Virginia’s Investment Management Board rebuffed questions about its holdings in regions linked to terror and genocide. The state’s pension investment fund is legally bound to make money and nothing else, board members said. But if California can stop investing in companies that deal with nations that sponsor terrorism and “ethnic cleansing,” why not West Virginia?

This week, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed a bill that bars California pension managers from investing in companies in Sudan. Another protects the University of California from liability as it divests of its holdings there.

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International Herald Tribune: Shell ordered to halt premium diesel fuel sales in Argentina

EXTRACT: Last year, President Nestor Kirchner called on Argentines to boycott Shell after it raised local prices amid rising oil costs. Shell quickly nudged pump prices back down after government-aligned protest groups marched on its stations and sales slumped.

THE ARTICLE

The Associated Press: Published: September 28, 2006

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina The Argentine unit of Royal Dutch Shell has been ordered to stop selling a new premium diesel fuel, the latest incident in a dispute with the government over pricing.
 
Argentina’s Energy Secretariat published a resolution in Wednesday’s official bulletin requiring oil companies to obtain government approval for new products introduced since Sept. 1.
 
The Internal Commerce Secretariat, which brokers price agreements across the economy, informed Shell on Tuesday that due to the new regulation it had to stop selling its recently launched V-Power Diesel, which costs 10 percent more than regular diesel.
 
In a statement released Wednesday night, Shell said that “although the new resolution wasn’t in effect at the time of the (new diesel) launch, and its retroactive application is aggravating, Shell has decided to suspend sales until it obtains authorization.”
 
The new fuel apparently raised the ire of government officials intent on holding down the prices consumers pay at the pump.
 
Last year, President Nestor Kirchner called on Argentines to boycott Shell after it raised local prices amid rising oil costs. Shell quickly nudged pump prices back down after government-aligned protest groups marched on its stations and sales slumped.
 
The supply of diesel has become particularly touchy in recent weeks amid reports of shortages.
 
With domestic diesel refineries working at maximum capacity, the government has tried to persuade oil companies to import additional diesel to meet domestic demand. Oil companies say importing diesel at world prices forces them to sell it at a loss in Argentina.
 
Some oil companies operating in Argentina have agreed to import additional diesel, though Shell officials have said they have no plans to do so.
 
 BUENOS AIRES, Argentina The Argentine unit of Royal Dutch Shell has been ordered to stop selling a new premium diesel fuel, the latest incident in a dispute with the government over pricing.
 
Argentina’s Energy Secretariat published a resolution in Wednesday’s official bulletin requiring oil companies to obtain government approval for new products introduced since Sept. 1.
 
The Internal Commerce Secretariat, which brokers price agreements across the economy, informed Shell on Tuesday that due to the new regulation it had to stop selling its recently launched V-Power Diesel, which costs 10 percent more than regular diesel.
 
In a statement released Wednesday night, Shell said that “although the new resolution wasn’t in effect at the time of the (new diesel) launch, and its retroactive application is aggravating, Shell has decided to suspend sales until it obtains authorization.”
 
The new fuel apparently raised the ire of government officials intent on holding down the prices consumers pay at the pump.
 
Last year, President Nestor Kirchner called on Argentines to boycott Shell after it raised local prices amid rising oil costs. Shell quickly nudged pump prices back down after government-aligned protest groups marched on its stations and sales slumped.
 
The supply of diesel has become particularly touchy in recent weeks amid reports of shortages.
 
With domestic diesel refineries working at maximum capacity, the government has tried to persuade oil companies to import additional diesel to meet domestic demand. Oil companies say importing diesel at world prices forces them to sell it at a loss in Argentina.
 
Some oil companies operating in Argentina have agreed to import additional diesel, though Shell officials have said they have no plans to do so.

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International Herald Tribune: Shell ordered to halt premium diesel fuel sales in Argentina

EXTRACT: Last year, President Nestor Kirchner called on Argentines to boycott Shell after it raised local prices amid rising oil costs. Shell quickly nudged pump prices back down after government-aligned protest groups marched on its stations and sales slumped.

THE ARTICLE

The Associated Press: Published: September 28, 2006

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina The Argentine unit of Royal Dutch Shell has been ordered to stop selling a new premium diesel fuel, the latest incident in a dispute with the government over pricing.
 
Argentina’s Energy Secretariat published a resolution in Wednesday’s official bulletin requiring oil companies to obtain government approval for new products introduced since Sept. 1.
 
The Internal Commerce Secretariat, which brokers price agreements across the economy, informed Shell on Tuesday that due to the new regulation it had to stop selling its recently launched V-Power Diesel, which costs 10 percent more than regular diesel.
 
In a statement released Wednesday night, Shell said that “although the new resolution wasn’t in effect at the time of the (new diesel) launch, and its retroactive application is aggravating, Shell has decided to suspend sales until it obtains authorization.”
 
The new fuel apparently raised the ire of government officials intent on holding down the prices consumers pay at the pump.
 
Last year, President Nestor Kirchner called on Argentines to boycott Shell after it raised local prices amid rising oil costs. Shell quickly nudged pump prices back down after government-aligned protest groups marched on its stations and sales slumped.
 
The supply of diesel has become particularly touchy in recent weeks amid reports of shortages.
 
With domestic diesel refineries working at maximum capacity, the government has tried to persuade oil companies to import additional diesel to meet domestic demand. Oil companies say importing diesel at world prices forces them to sell it at a loss in Argentina.
 
Some oil companies operating in Argentina have agreed to import additional diesel, though Shell officials have said they have no plans to do so.
 
 BUENOS AIRES, Argentina The Argentine unit of Royal Dutch Shell has been ordered to stop selling a new premium diesel fuel, the latest incident in a dispute with the government over pricing.
 
Argentina’s Energy Secretariat published a resolution in Wednesday’s official bulletin requiring oil companies to obtain government approval for new products introduced since Sept. 1.
 
The Internal Commerce Secretariat, which brokers price agreements across the economy, informed Shell on Tuesday that due to the new regulation it had to stop selling its recently launched V-Power Diesel, which costs 10 percent more than regular diesel.
 
In a statement released Wednesday night, Shell said that “although the new resolution wasn’t in effect at the time of the (new diesel) launch, and its retroactive application is aggravating, Shell has decided to suspend sales until it obtains authorization.”
 
The new fuel apparently raised the ire of government officials intent on holding down the prices consumers pay at the pump.
 
Last year, President Nestor Kirchner called on Argentines to boycott Shell after it raised local prices amid rising oil costs. Shell quickly nudged pump prices back down after government-aligned protest groups marched on its stations and sales slumped.
 
The supply of diesel has become particularly touchy in recent weeks amid reports of shortages.
 
With domestic diesel refineries working at maximum capacity, the government has tried to persuade oil companies to import additional diesel to meet domestic demand. Oil companies say importing diesel at world prices forces them to sell it at a loss in Argentina.
 
Some oil companies operating in Argentina have agreed to import additional diesel, though Shell officials have said they have no plans to do so.

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The Washington Post: Warming trend is hatching a business

EXTRACT: No one is on the sidelines in Europe. Power generators now count greenhouse gases — measured in metric tons of carbon dioxide — as one of their costs. “It’s going to change the way you make decisions about deploying capital,” says Garth Edward, trading manager for environmental products at Royal Dutch Shell PLC, which has 25 installations in the E.U. system. Energy efficiency projects, he said, “are going to move up the ladder faster.”

THE ARTICLE

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Playfuls.com: Sakhalin 2 Oil And Gas Work Causing Great Damage Warns Ecologist

Oil and gas exploration by Royal Dutch Shell and Japanese partners has caused extensive environmental damage on Russia’s far eastern island of Sakhalin, a leading German ecologist said Thursday.

Species at risk from drilling and production include the rare grey whales in the Piltun Bay at the north end of Sakhalin, Ralf Sonntag, head of the German branch of the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), told Deutsche Presse-Agentur dpa by telephone from the island.

Pipelines being built 800 kilometres to a terminal at the southern end of Sakhalin had been built over about one thousand rivers and streams, in some cases blocking waterways with debris and endangering salmon populations, according to the ecologist.

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RTE News (Ireland) Shell to modify route of pipeline

28 September 2006 17:56

Shell Ireland says it intends to modify the route of the Corrib gas Pipline in Co Mayo.

Lawyers for the company told the High Court that Shell Ireland would do this in consultation with the local community. 

The High Court has given Shell Ireland permission to begin the process of discontinuing legal proceedings against local landowners.

The company has requested all defendants to withdraw their counterclaims against the company but lawyers representing four of the landowners said they would not be withdrawing.

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Houston Chronicle: Russia Watchdog Seeks to Halt Project

Sept. 28, 2006, 11:23AM
By ALEX NICHOLSON AP Business Writer
© 2006 The Associated Press

MOSCOW — Russia’s environmental watchdog called Thursday for pipe-laying work to be halted at a Royal Dutch Shell PLC-led project on Russia’s Far Eastern Sakhalin island even as the country’s foreign minister said any problems could be resolved through dialogue.

“We want criminal cases for every destroyed tree or damaged river,” Oleg Mitvol, the deputy head of Rosprirodnadzor said, according to the Interfax news agency. “If the criminal cases are opened for everything, the company will read the Criminal Code, come to its senses and stop the barbaric activity,”

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Daily Mail: Shelling out for takeovers: Shell will have to weigh into the takeover market or risk being gobbled up

EXTRACT: Nevertheless, it is seen as inevitable that at some point Shell will have to weigh into the takeover market or risk being gobbled up itself.

THE ARTICLE

28 September 2006

Oil prices may be falling now but the appetite for finding and building reserves is growing. The minor league takeover battle for Australia’s Hardman Resources, in which Tullow Oil is the first to put cash on the table, could be symptomatic of bigger deals to come.

The crown jewel at Hardman is drilling rights in Mauritania. Together with Uganda it looks like one of the better oil prospects in Africa.

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UpstreamOnline: Lavrov urges Sakhalin partners to talk

By Upstream staff

Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov today urged the Sakhalin 2 consortium to resolve a simmering crisis over the $20 billion Shell-led venture by talking with the Russian side.

Lavrov told a news conference on Sakhalin island that he had observed “from the management of Sakhalin Energy a sincere wish to resolve these problems”, Interfax agency reported.

“Any nascent issues should be settled through dialogue. I am convinced that dialogue with competent Russian structures will help settle these issues,” said Lavrov.

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RIA Novosti: Sakhalin II pipeline must be closed – ecology official

16:34 | 28/ 09/ 2006 

YUZHNO-SAKHALINSK, September 28 (RIA Novosti) – A deputy head of Russia’s environmental watchdog said Thursday that pipeline construction under the massive Sakhalin II oil and gas project in Russia’s Far East must be stopped.

“Further work to build the Sakhalin II pipeline as it has been done to date is inadmissible,” Oleg Mitvol said, adding he did not demand the closure of the project in general.

Russian officials accuse project operator Sakhalin Energy of major environmental breaches, and the Ministry of Natural Resources last Monday annulled the 2003 environmental expert review for the $20 billion project, which is led by Royal Dutch Shell (55%).

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KAZINFORM (Japan): Tokyo hopes Moscow is law-guided in handling Sakhalin-2 problems

TOKYO, September 28, 2006. KAZINFORM. – Japan’s government hopes that Moscow will handle the ecological problems confronting the oil and gas project Sakhalin-2 in keeping with Russian laws, First Vice Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Takao Kitabata said.

He told a news conference on Thursday that Tokyo would watch the developments over the project, whose shareholders include Japan’s major trade and investment corporations Mitsui Bussan and Mitsubishi Shoji.

Kitabata pointed to the fact that Russia’s leaders attach much importance to the implementation of the Sakhalin-2 project.

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Reuters: FACTBOX-Russia’s environmental worries on Sakhalin

28 Sep 2006 13:39:50 GMT
Source: Reuters

MOSCOW, Sept 28 (Reuters) – Russia has ordered a full environmental probe of Royal Dutch Shell’s $20 billion Sakhalin-2 oil and gas development in the Russia’s Far East.

Russia’s environment watchdog RosPrirodNadzor says that Sakhalin Energy, the project operator, persistently violates environmental legislation.

In 2003, Russia’s State Environmental Expert Review (SEER) of Sakhalin-2 made 60 substantial recommendations aimed at reducing environmental and safety risks.

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Reuters: Update 1: Russia watchdog accuses Shell of barbaric activity

By Elif Kaban and Michael Stott

MOSCOW, Sept 28 (Reuters) – A top Russian environment official stepped up his attacks on the Royal Dutch Shell-led $20 billion Sakhalin energy project on Thursday, saying Moscow wanted damages for every destroyed tree or damaged river.

“If criminal cases are opened for everything, the company will read the Criminal Code, come to its senses, and stop the barbarian activity,” Oleg Mitvol, deputy head of Russia’s environmental agency, told reporters in Sakhalin.

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Irish Independent: Shell denies trying to avoid disclosure of Corrib documents

13:13 Thursday September 28th 2006 

Lawyers for Shell Ireland have refuted suggestions that their bid to withdraw their case against six landowners in north Mayo is so the company can avoid an order made for discovery of documents.

They have told the High Court that instead this move arises directly out of its decision to reroute the Corrib Gas pipeline in August.

Lawyers for Shell said the company had decided to reroute the pipeline to achieve an agreed route with the local community.

They said the whole process in relation to the gas line would have to be started again and therefore their case against six local landowners, three of them members of the Rossport Five, was redundant.

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Dow Jones Newswires: PSAs Still Shield Oil Companies from Cost Overruns

By Matthew Allen     
Dow Jones Newswires     

LONDON Sep 27, 2006 (Dow Jones Newswires) Production-sharing agreements like those in place at Russia’s Sakhalin liquefied natural gas project offer higher levels of protection from project cost overruns than royalty and taxation mechanisms, despite hyper-inflation in the oil industry, a report by consultants Wood Mackenzie said Wednesday.

Such contracts may also mean, however, that companies are less exposed to the potential upside of oil-price increases, author Graham Kellas said.

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MosNews: Russia Watchdog Values Environmental Damage from Sakhalin-2 at $50Bln

Sakhalin II

Photo from www.greenpeace.org

Created: 28.09.2006 11:26 MSK (GMT +3), Updated: 11:26 MSK

The deputy head of Russia’s environmental watchdog Rosprirodnadzor Oleg Mitvol told reporters on Thursday, Sept. 28, that Shell’s Sakhalin-2 oil and gas project has brought about more than $50 billion in environmental damages.

According to Mitvol, this figure is composed of the cost of recultivation activities in the vicinity of Aniva Bay of Okhotsk Sea and restoration of forests around the trunk pipelines, which are being built within the framework of Sakhalin-2 project.

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The Russia Journal: scandal surrounding Sakhalin-2…

September 28, 2006

Headline: Russian officials calculate damage from Sakhalin-2

MOSCOW – Environmental damage from Sakhalin-2 project could top $50 billion, Oleg Mitvol, Deputy Director of Russia’s Federal Service for Environmental Supervision (Rosprirodnadzor) told reporters on Wednesday. He was commenting on remarks his company could suffer direct losses of $10 billion if the project is blocked by the Russian authorities.

Mitvol said Rosprirodnadzor had launched the comprehensive examination of Sakhalin-2, which would continue until 25 October, after which the environmental service will announce its estimate of the environmental damage.

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Regnum.ru: Russian Natural Resources Ministry may halt Sakhalin 2 Project

28 Sep 2006 05:56 GMT

Russian natural resources ministry will halt implementation of Shell Company’s Sakhalin 2 oil and gas Project, if its participants do not guarantee environmental safety of the pipeline, on September 26, the ministry’s head Yuri Trutnev stated. He is quoted by NTV-Channel as saying that the final decision concerning the matter will be made as a result of the check, which is planned to start in the near future and last for a month.

“Even today we may quite exactly say, scaled violation of environmental legislation is taking place during the Sakhalin 2 project implementation,” Yuri Trutnev stated. “We will not prepare documentation by ourselves; it should be done by the Sakhalin Energy Company. If Sakhalin Energy proposes a plan, which will convince that the Sakhalin 2 project realization will not have destructive consequences for the environment, they can expect the project will not be halted,” the minister added. 

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Daily Telegraph: Database: Energy; Thursday 28 September 2006

• Royal Dutch Shell’s Sakhalin-2 oil and gas project may have caused ecological damage exceeding $50bn, Prime-Tass reported, citing Oleg Mitvol, the deputy head of the Natural Resources Ministry’s environmental inspectorate.

• Russia is stepping up environmental checks on Royal Dutch Shell and other overseas oil producers because of public demands for compliance, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said, denying any plan to force the companies out.

• Centrica, Britain’s largest energy supplier, said withdrawals from the country’s biggest natural-gas storage site can resume as scheduled on Oct 1 after being halted in February, when a fire shut the facility.

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AP Worldstream: Report: Nigerian politicians allied with hostage-taking militants

By: KATHARINE HOURELD
Published: Sep 27, 2006

Nigerian politicians have started allying themselves with militant groups that have kidnapped foreign oil workers as elections approach, says a report released Thursday by an international think tank.

The report by Brussels-based International Crisis Group says that while militant groups have exploited frustration with government corruption to ensure the sympathy of local communities, these same groups frequently receive money and arms from the politicians they claim to be fighting against.

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Lloyds List: Sakhalin II project sells 98% of its LNG cargoes

By: Martyn Wingrove, Lloyds List
Published: Sep 28, 2006

SAKHALIN Energy has sold 98% of its liquefied natural gas forward cargoes for Russia’s first LNG project and will consider building a third train.

The Shell-led consortium has to formally approve one more LNG contract and then will have almost all of its gas production booked with international buyers.

But the Sakhalin II project in eastern Russia is still under threat from the state, despite assurances from foreign minister Sergei Lavrov that the production sharing contracts will not be scrapped.

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Lloyds List: Shell joins Samsun Ceyhan pipe build

Published: Sep 28, 2006

ROYAL Dutch Shell has joined Italian oil firm Eni to build an oil pipeline across Turkey to take Black Sea oil to the Mediterranean, writes Martyn Wingrove.

The Anglo-Dutch oil major is looking to pump its future Kazakhstan oil production from the Black Sea port of Samsun to the tanker terminal at Ceyhan along the $1.5bn line.

‘We have signed an agreement with Eni and Calik Enerji to investigate the possibility of participating in the development of a pipeline between Samsun and Ceyhan,’ said a Shell spokeswoman.

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