I confirm for the record that we are in contact with Oleg Mitvol, the Deputy Head of RosPrirodNadzor. Mitvol is the senior Russian Environmental Official unkindly described in a recent Guardian newspaper article as a “Kremlin attack dog” – “6ft 2in and dressed in a black coat.”
Information from our Shell insider sources about Sakhalin II issues has been flowing for some time. We cannot reveal details as a third party organisation, working with Oleg Mitvol in Russia, requested confidentiality. However, we have supplied directly to Oleg Mitvol leaked Shell internal emails between senior Shell managers. The emails, which reached us via a third party Shell insider, reveal potentially calamitous flaws at the Sakhalin II project which go beyond environmental issues currently under Russian government scrutiny. Extracts from these emails were referred to in a MarketWatch article published earlier this week: -
Information revealed in the emails may well be relevant to litigation currently underway in the Moscow courts regarding Sakhalin II environmental issues.Â
Concern was expressed in the emails that the design for oil and gas wells on Russia’s Sakhalin Island do not properly address seismic risks. In this connection, we have advised Oleg Mitvol of a truly chilling warning received from a Shell insider yesterday morning. After studying the above emails, this expert, who is calm and cautious by nature, has warned of a potential environmental calamity on a scale never before witnessed by humanity (our description).
A quote from the email received: -
“You have no idea how significant the comments in those emails might be – to a petroleum engineer, they conjure up the worst of possible scenarios – uncontrollable blowouts in a frozen, pristine, ecologically sensitive environment, and the potential for the entire contents of the Sakhalin oil and gas fields to be released at the seabed. The Exxon Valdez would, quite literally, be a drop in the ocean by comparison.”
The email goes on to link Sakhalin II issues with the Shell reserves scandal.
We have the private fax number for Oleg Mitvol and will pass on to him directly any further insider information supplied to us as the Sakhalin II crisis/project progresses. We are already preparing to supply more information. Any information can be supplied to us on a strictly confidential basis.
We have also brought to the attention of Oleg Mitvol the news report in The Guardian about Shell’s improper use of what was supposed to be a non-commercial charity: The Shell Foundation. We have pointed out that the breach of Charity Commission rules was in relation to the Sakhalin II project.