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Posts from ‘July, 2007’

IntelliBriefs: The Great Game : 21st Century Version

The rules of the game
July 31, 2007

The current century began in an intensely violent manner and there are no signs of a let up. Two and a half deadly wars are being fought in our neighbourhood and threaten to spread further and may even affect India in the years ahead.

These are the results of great power politics, ambitions and economic needs. It is therefore interesting to go through some of the statements by Western strategists and political analysts from time to time. There is a common thread running through them – that seeks total dominance over the rest of the world.

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The Moscow Times: Billion-Dollar Principles

Wednesday, August 1, 2007. Issue 3711. Page 7.
By Yulia Latynina
 
The president and owner of Russneft, Mikhail Gutseriyev, wrote an open letter in which he accused authorities of “unprecedented persecution” in an effort to make him “more compliant.” Gutseriyev also announced that he would leave his post in order to keep the company intact. It is widely known that Oleg Deripaska, who is one of the Kremlin’s favored oligarchs, will buy Russneft. In this context, it is important to remember Deripaska’s interview with the Financial Times in which he said he was prepared to hand his company over to the state if requested to do so.

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Tribune (Nigeria): Alamieyeseigha, Dokubo, Niger Delta and Nigeria’s oil industry

Nigerian Tribune image 

Diepreye Alamieyeseigha, former
Governor of Bayelsa State

By Martin Ayankola, Lagos

Former Bayelsa State Governor, Chief Diepreye Alamieyeseigha, was on Friday released from the Ikoyi Prisons, Lagos, following the expiration of the two-year jail sentence handed down to him on Thursday by a Federal High Court in Lagos. The release came after a plea bargaining arrangement that resulted in Alamieyeseigha pleading guilty to charges against him and the Judge sentencing him to 2 years imprisonment with forfeiture of assets.

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Financial Times: Falkland Islands upstream sector: Consolidation likely within the next year, sources say

By Oliver Adelman in London
Published: July 31 2007 15:01 | Last updated: July 31 2007 15:01

Please email [email protected] or call EMEA: + 44 (0)20 7059 6105 Americas: +1 212 686-5277 Asia-Pacific: +852 2158 9730 for further information on mergermarket and how to receive more articles like the one below.
——————————————————————————————

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Kansas City Star: Oil industry executives show hypocrisy on hot fuel

In their latest round of misleading statements about hot fuel, Big Oil executives made one thing clear: Their customers don’t matter.

Testifying last week on Capitol Hill, the executives tried to convince Congress to let the companies continue selling gasoline from pumps that do not adjust for temperature.

Shell Oil Vice President Hugh Cooley said his company “does not believe that the American consumers are harmed in any way.”

But they are. In warmer months, gasoline expands and — if retail pumps aren’t adjusted for this — motorists get less energy than they pay for.

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The Napa Valley Register: Help stop the drilling at ANWR

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

The Bush administration is opening the back door to the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge by letting Shell Oil begin drilling off the coastline this summer. This leaves the entire area vulnerable to a massive oil spill, which is inevitable.

With only one oil spill, there will be a permanent toxic waste site that can never be cleaned up — because the oil industry has no proven methods for cleaning up oil spills in icy waters.

The irony is that the Bush administration has already predicted that at least one oil spill is “likely to occur,” and they are also aware that a toxic oil spill would spread into migratory routes, which would endanger bowhead whales, polar bear birthing grounds and hundreds of thousands of migratory birds. How can this administration be so completely insensitive to anything but profit? It astounds me.

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Associated Press: Marathon Oil to buy Western Oil for $5.5B

Associated Press – July 31, 2007 10:25 AM ET

HOUSTON (AP) – Marathon Oil has agreed to buy Western Oil Sands for $5.5 billion in cash and stock.

The deal announced today would give Houston-based Marathon a stake in Canada’s oil sands market.

As part of the deal, Western is required to spin off WesternZagros, its wholly-owned subsidiary with interests in Kurdistan.

The closing is expected in the fourth quarter of this year.

Marathon says the agreement will give it a 20% interest in the Athabasca Oil Sands Project in Alberta — currently held by Western Oil.

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NewsMax.com: OPEC Gets $649 Billion Windfall on Oil Boom

Tuesday, July 31, 2007 10:07 a.m. EDT

LONDON — OPEC’s oil and gas export revenue surged 22 percent to a record $649 billion in 2006 as crude prices hit an all-time high and the exporter group pumped close to full tilt, an OPEC report showed on Tuesday.

In the world’s biggest oil exporter Saudi Arabia income from petroleum exports, including crude oil, condensates and natural gas liquids, hit $194 billion last year, a rise of 20 percent, OPEC said in its Annual Statistical Bulletin.

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The Mayo News: EU takes on Corrib controversy

Tuesday, 31 July 2007 
Áine Ryan

DR MARK GARAVAN was last week formally notified of the European Commission’s Environment Directorate’s intention to conduct a preliminary investigation into the Corrib gas project. Alleged breaches of several EU Directives were formally highlighted by Dr Garavan through the offices of the European Parliament’s Petitions Committee.

The former Shell to Sea spokesman has welcomed the efficiency of the EU’s response to the complaints, observing that the Irish Government seemed to be regularly in breach of directives which then resulted in significant fines.

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BBC News: Nigerian gunmen seize Pakistani

Tuesday, 31 July 2007, 09:50 GMT 10:50 UK 

Unknown gunmen in speedboats have kidnapped a Pakistani construction worker in Nigeria’s oil region.

Seven men dressed in red seized the man, named as Tahri, in Bodo city in Ogoniland, security sources say.

The man works for Italian firm Gitto. Such kidnappings are common in the region and most hostages are released unharmed after a ransom is paid.

More than 150 foreigners – mostly oil workers – and many Nigerians have been kidnapped in the region this year.

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Money Morning.com: Oil Companies Continue to Take Risks Despite Objections

By Jason Simpkins
31 July 2007

A group of U.S. pension funds, including the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (Calpers), the New York State Common Retirement Funds, and New York City Pension Funds, have leveled pointed criticisms at several oil and gas companies for their involvement in Iran’s energy sector.  The letter went out to such prominent global energy giants as Royal Dutch Shell Plc. (NYSE: RDS.A), Total (NYSE: TOT), Eni (NYSE: ENI), Repsol (NYSE: REP), and Gazprom (NYSE: GAZP).

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Reuters AlertNet: ANALYSIS-Nigerian delta peace moves to unlock oil output

31 Jul 2007 12:01:58 GMT
Source: Reuters

Background
Nigeria violence
More  By Tom Ashby

LAGOS, July 31 (Reuters) – Nigeria’s new government and militant groups in the oil-producing Niger Delta are moving towards talks that could restore lost output from the world’s eighth-largest oil exporter.

An 18-month campaign of guerrilla attacks on Western oil facilities has prompted thousands of foreigners to leave Africa’s top producer, reduced output by a fifth and helped oil prices rise to record highs.

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BankWatch.Org: Fight to defend the grey whales is not over

31 July 2007

Yesterday the participants of WWF whalewatching expedition returned to Moscow from Sakhalin.The preliminary results gathered during the expedition revealed that most likely construction works have rendered negative impacts on grey whales.

In the immediate future WWF in partnership with other organizations is planning to analyze various data on this problem and to make the final conclusion.

The main objective of WWF expedition was to reveal earlier possible the negative impacts on grey whales during the *Piltun-Astohskaya-B* (*Sakhalin-2* project) platform construction and to notify the company and State institutions about this influence.

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Bloomberg: Rosneft Plans to Auction Some Oil-Export Volumes (Update1)

By Eduard Gismatullin

July 31 (Bloomberg) — OAO Rosneft, Russia’s largest oil company, plans to offer customers crude and fuel exports at auctions to improve sales.

The company is developing a set of regulations for tenders, which may be approved by the end of the year, said a Rosneft spokesman who declined to be identified. The company has recently offered some export volumes to a limited number of customers to test the market, the spokesman said today by phone from Moscow.

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Bloomberg:Chevron S. Africa Refinery Hit by Strike, Union Says (Update2)

By Mike Cohen

July 31 (Bloomberg) — Workers at South African refineries owned by Chevron Corp. and PetroSA went on strike after their employers refused to meet their demands for an immediate 8.5 percent wage increase, the Chemical, Energy, Paper, Printing, Wood and Allied Workers’ Union said.

Workers walked off the job at Chevron’s refinery in Cape Town today, the union said today in an e-mailed statement. PetroSA’s workers struck yesterday.

South Africa has six refineries, owned by Chevron, PetroSA, BP Plc, Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Sasol Ltd. and Petroliam Nasional Bhd’s Engen unit. Unions have been pushing them to increase wages above the inflation rate of 6.4 percent, saying workers should benefit more from high oil prices and expanding demand.

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LATEST DONOVAN CORRESPONDENCE WITH SENIOR OFFICIALS OF ROYAL DUTCH SHELL PLC

Richard Wiseman, General Counsel M & A and Project Finance, Shell International

Richard Wiseman, Shell International Petroleum
Company Ltd General Counsel – Mergers & Acquisitions).

EMAILS RECEIVED FROM MICHIEL BRANDJES, COMPANY SECRETARY AND CORPORATE COUNSEL

—–Original Message—–
From: Brandjes, Michiel CM RDS-LC
Sent: vrijdag 20 juli 2007 8:26

To: ‘John Donovan’

Subject: RE: DATA PROTECTION ACT – SUBJECT ACCESS REQUEST

Dear Mr Donovan,

I have passed your email to the company secretariat of Shell International Limited. I am sure that they will in due course answer if and as appropriate. There is no general email address for the company secretariat of Shell International Limited and I suggest that you use the email address.

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PR Newswire (US): Kline Study Shows Shell Retakes Top Spot in Global Lubricants Market in 2006

Published: Jul 30, 2007

LITTLE FALLS, N.J., July 30 /PRNewswire/ — Shell has reclaimed the number one position in the world lubricants market, according to data from a recently completed study by analysts at Kline & Company, a worldwide management consulting and market research firm.

Volumetric data from Competitive Intelligence for the Global Lubricants Industry, 2006-2016 shows Shell edging out its largest competitor, albeit by a slim margin, just one year after ExxonMobil had achieved the top position. The study indicates that organic growth in Shell’s business in China, Russia, and parts of Asia and Europe, coupled with the company’s acquisition of a 75% share in the Chinese oil company Beijing Tongyi were the deciding factors. BP, Chevron, and Total round out the top five lubricant marketers.

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Polish News Bulletin: Petrolinwest’s Russian Purchase Upgrades Its Profile from Oil Exploration to Oil Extraction

EXTRACT: But the huge players can lose a lot in Russia too. The example of Shell or BP, who lost their licenses for gas extraction are good examples. The political risk is much higher.

Published: Jul 31, 2007

Listed Petrolinwest has oil. On Thursday the Ryszard Krauze-controlled company, which has been holding licenses for oil exploration in Russia and Kazakhstan for a while, bought a 50-percent stake in a group of Russian oil extraction firms. The documented deposits they own reach 35 million barrels.

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BBC Monitoring Service: Summary of Russian press for Tuesday 31 July 2007

Published: Jul 31, 2007

Kommersant

1. Nataliya Grib et al. report says businessman Mikhail Gutseriyev is giving up almost all his business in Russia, after announcing on 30 July that he is selling Russneft and stepping down as president of the company. He is also said to be selling Russkiy Ugol (Russian coal) and other assets worth 1bn dollars. He says he is temporarily giving up business to pursue academic research. Some experts note that Gurtsiyev is getting rid of his assets due to pressure exerted by the authorities; pp 1, 9.

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Financial Times: Oil group warned over delay to Kazakh project

By Isabel Gorst in Moscow
Published: July 31 2007 03:00 | Last updated: July 31 2007 03:00

Kazakhstan has warned a foreign consortium led by Eni, the Italian oil company, that it will demand better terms at the giant Kashagan oilfield in the Caspian Sea to compensate for soaring costs and the delayed launch of production at one of the world’s most challenging oilfield developments.

Baktykozha Izmukhambetov, Kazakhstan’s energy minister, told a government meeting yesterday that Eni had lifted its estimate of the full cost of developing Kashagan from $57bn (€41.6bn, £28bn) to $137bn after encountering technical difficulties in the field. Eni had also postponed Kashagan’s start-up by two years to 2010, he said.

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The Wall Street Journal: Australia Pushes Clean Coal

Wall Street Journal image

The Wall Street Journal: Australia Pushes Clean Coal

Fears of a Backlash Against Top Export Drive Effort
By PATRICK BARTA
July 31, 2007; Page A6

SYDNEY, Australia — Australia’s efforts to protect one of its most vital industries in an age when “coal” is a dirty word place the country at the forefront of global efforts to burn the fuel more cleanly.

Australia is the world’s biggest coal exporter, and coal is the country’s No. 1 export, generating more than 20 billion Australian dollars, or more than US$17 billion, in revenue each year. Local politicians and mining executives worry that a backlash against coal fuel — believed to be a main contributor to global warming — could imperil the industry and erode Australia’s economic competitiveness.

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The Wall Street Journal: Don Putin: if you really wish to understand the Putin regime in depth… ‘The Godfather’ trilogy is a good place to start

Wall Street Journal image

The Wall Street Journal: Don Putin

By GARRY KASPAROV
July 26, 2007; Page A13

When Vladimir Putin took power in Russia in 2000, the burning question was: “Who is Putin?” It has now changed to: “What is the nature of Putin’s Russia?” This regime has been remarkably consistent in its behavior, yet foreign leaders and the Western press still act surprised at Mr. Putin’s total disregard for their opinions.
 
Again and again we hear cries of: “Doesn’t Putin know how bad this looks?” When another prominent Russian journalist is murdered, when a businessman not friendly to the Kremlin is jailed, when a foreign company is pushed out of its Russian investment, when pro-democracy marchers are beaten by police, when gas and oil supplies are used as weapons, or when Russian weapons and missile technology are sold to terrorist sponsor states like Iran and Syria, what needs to be asked is what sort of government would continue such behavior. This Kremlin regime operates within a value system entirely different from that of the Western nations struggling to understand what is happening behind the medieval red walls.

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The Wall Street Journal: Kazakhstan Presses Eni Group For Better Terms on Oil Project

Wall Street Journal image

By GUY CHAZAN
July 31, 2007; Page A2

Kazakhstan became the latest oil-rich nation to toughen its stance toward Western investors when it accused a consortium developing one of the world’s biggest oil fields of breach of contract and said it wanted to change terms of the deal.
 
The move against a consortium of companies led by Italy’s Eni SpA underscores how resource nationalism, the drive by oil-producing countries to claw back control of their hydrocarbon deposits, is spreading — even to places such as Kazakhstan that have long been friendly toward foreign investors.

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The Wall Street Journal: U.S. Tries to Avoid EU’s Carbon-Trading Woes

By ERICA HERRERO-MARTINEZ
July 31, 2007

LONDON — European officials are urging air-pollution authorities in several U.S. states to avoid the problems that have plagued Europe’s system for trading carbon-emissions credits since it was set up 2½ years ago.

The U.S. doesn’t plan to introduce a nationwide emissions-trading system, but 10 Northeastern states are trying to set up their own emissions-trading system, starting in 2009. California also aims to set up a program, though it hasn’t set a date. Officials in those states are now looking to Europe’s experience in carbon trading as they sketch out how their own plans will work.

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The New York Times: Russian Oil Magnate Forced to Sell to Putin Loyalist, He Says

By ANDREW E. KRAMER
July 31, 2007

MOSCOW, July 30 — The owner of Russneft, one of Russia’s largest private oil companies, confirmed Monday that he would sell the business to an investor loyal to the Kremlin, but he added in an open letter that the sale was not voluntary.

Mikhail S. Gutseriev, who was once in the tight coterie of Russian billionaires known as oligarchs but has since fallen from favor, accused the government of President Vladimir V. Putin of forcing him out of the company using trumped-up tax claims.

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Daily Telegraph: BP turns focus on Russian satellites

By Roland Gribben
Last Updated: 1:07am BST 31/07/2007

BP has set its sights on breaking into the Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan oil provinces after setbacks in Russia where a heavy tax bill is adding to its headaches.

Robert Dudley, chief executive of TNK-BP, the Anglo-Russian oil group 50pc owned by BP, is anxious to widen the BP portfolio in the former Soviet Union and make up for lost time.

The drive comes as Kazakhstan threatens a Russian-style renegotiation of a contract to develop its biggest oil field, accusing Eni, the Italian oil major heading the consortium developing the Kashagan field, of breaching contract terms. Shell, Exxon Mobil and Total are among the partners.

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My FOX St. LOUIS: Text: Shell Oil Says ‘Don’t Blame Us’

Last Edited: Monday, 30 Jul 2007, 11:16 PM CDT 
By: Sean Conroy

(KTVI-myFOXstl.com): While 2 dollars and sixty cents a gallon brings cheers at the pumps that is still among the highest price per gallon we have paid recently. 

“I’m as upset as Joe Consumer because I pay the same price on gasoline that he does.”

The difference is as Shell Oil’s U.S. President, John Hofmeister, reaps the rewards of those high gas prices.  When it comes to those high prices he points directly to our dependence on foreign oil and its every increasing wholesale price.  Hofmeister says prices at the pump would go down the sooner we dumped foreign oil and the best way to do that is for the American consumer to get involved. 

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Safety Czar for Shell

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL 

JULY 30, 2007, 2:05 PM ET Shell appointed a global safety executive, after suffering 37 fatalities in 2006, more than double the number had by its major competitors.

Kieron McFadyen, a 20-year company veteran, was appointed to instill safety standards and assess risk, especially for remote locations, where the majority of fatalities occurred. “As our portfolio changes … we go into new areas where we are not familiar with the culture,” he told Dow Jones Newswires. “We need to go through the assumption that it ain’t going to be easier.”

The 37 deaths last year compared with seven at BP, 10 at Exxon Mobil Corp. and 12 at Chevron Corp. But as we discussed earlier this year in Energy Roundup, these tallies aren’t necessarily the best measure of a company’s safety record, as they don’t account for factors like possible differences in the way companies count deaths.

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Bloomberg: Shell to Build New Oil Plant for Up to C$27 Billion (Update1)

By Sonja Franklin

July 30 (Bloomberg) — Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s Canadian unit is seeking to build a new plant for as much as C$27 billion ($25 billion) to process bitumen from Alberta’s oil sands and supply North American refineries.

The Scotford Upgrader 2 Project, to be located next to existing facilities near Fort Saskatchewan, Alberta, will be built in four phases with a capacity of 100,000 barrels a day each, Calgary-based Shell Canada Ltd. said in an application to provincial regulators on its Web site today. Construction may start as early as 2009.

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Reuters: UPDATE 1-Shell applies to build C$27 bln oil sands plant

Mon Jul 30, 2007 9:20 PM BST
(Adds details)

CALGARY, Alberta, July 30 (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell Plc has applied to build a massive oil sands upgrading complex at the site of its Edmonton, Alberta, refinery that could cost as much as C$27 billion ($25 billion), putting it among Canada’s costliest projects, it said on Monday.

Shell said Upgrader 2 would be built in four 100,000 barrel a day stages, processing tar-like bitumen from the Athabasca Oil Sands Project in northern Alberta — which is undergoing a multibillion-dollar expansion — as well as its steam-driven oil sands projects in the same region.

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Reuters: UPDATE 1-Williams to build pipelines to Perdido hub

Mon Jul 30, 2007 8:50 PM BST
(Adds new details, background)

NEW YORK, July 30 (Reuters) – Williams Cos. Inc. said on Monday it plans to spend $480 million to build pipelines to the Perdido hub, a floating production facility that Royal Dutch Shell, Chevron Corp and BP Plc are building in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico.

Williams said it plans to build 184 miles of oil and gas pipelines and expand its natural gas processing capacity as part of its Perdido Norte project.

Williams has agreements with the three companies to provide gathering, processing and transportation services over the life of their reserves in the area around the hub. It said it will begin collecting volume-based fees for services it provides when production starts.

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OilWeek: Shell Canada files regulatory application for Scotford Upgrader 2 (Shell-Canada)

Jul 30, 2007 2:17:00 PM MST
 
CALGARY (CP) _ Shell Canada says it has filed a regulatory application for a new upgrading facility adjacent to its existing facilities in the Fort Saskatchewan area, east of Edmonton.

The company said Monday that the proposed Scotford Upgrader 2 will be constructed in four phases and process Shell‘s share of future Athabasca minable bitumen production as well as bitumen from the company‘s in situ oilsands developments.

It could ultimately process up to 400,000 barrels a day of oilsands bitumen into a range of synthetic crude oil products.

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ShellNews.net: Battle with Shell for the domain name: royaldutchshellplc.com

30 July 2007

In May 2005, Shell issued proceedings via The World Intellectual Property Organisation against the co-owner of this website, Alfred Donovan. The purpose was to try to seize three Shell related domain names including royaldutchshellplc.com and www.royaldutchshellgroup.com

Shell gave the impression in its submission to the WIPO that it wanted to use the domain names and that Donovan was preventing Shell from being able to do so.

This extract is from pages 12 and 13 of Shell’s submission.

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Brilliant article by Derek Brower: What Shell’s deal with Rosneft says about the oil world’s balance of power

 Jeroen van der Veer: Robert Amsterdam pik

Article By Derek Brower, journalist

AS A beaten dog loves his master, so Shell loves Russia. However else does one explain the company’s attitude towards the authorities in Moscow? Humiliated last year on Sakhalin, the company’s first response was to grovel words of thanks to its tormentors in the Kremlin. Now it has followed this with a strategic pact with Rosneft, the state-controlled oil company, covering future undisclosed projects in Russia.

Everyone knew Shell’s chief executive, Jeroen van der Veer, was being disingenuous late last year in the aftermath of the Sakhalin affair. But the sight of him grinning beside President Putin as an “agreement” was announced to give control of Sakhalin Energy to Gazprom displayed just how much self-respect a businessman is willing to concede on his company’s behalf.

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Reuters: Big Oil spends more, pumps fewer barrels

Mon Jul 30, 2007 8:00AM EDT

By Alex Lawler – Analysis

LONDON (Reuters) – The world’s three largest fully publicly traded oil firms are investing billions of dollars more this year and the extra spending has yet to result in higher production.

Exxon Mobil Corp., Royal Dutch Shell Plc and BP Plc posted falling second-quarter output, even though they plan up to a total of $61 billion in 2007 capital spending, up 5.5 percent from 2006.

“We’re in a transition for the supermajors where they are spending an awful lot to reinvigorate their portfolios,” said Jason Kenney, European oil analyst at ING in Edinburgh. “It takes time.”

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CNNMoney.com: Nigerian Forcados Force Majeure Still In Place – Shell

July 30, 2007: 08:52 AM EST

LONDON -(Dow Jones)- Royal Dutch Shell PLC PLC (RDSB.LN) said Monday a force majeure on exports from the Forcados oil tanker loading terminal in Nigeria is still in effect despite the first cargo sent in more than a year from the facility in recent weeks.

“We did one crude lifting, but the force majeure is still in place,” Shell spokeswoman Eurwen Thomas said.

The loadings came from oil in storage and not from new production, Thomas said, declining to comment on how much crude was pulled from storage and on when other loadings were likely. The Forcados platform operated at a capacity of 380,000 barrels a day prior to militant attacks that shut the terminal in February, 2006.

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Hemscott / AFX News: Shell declines to comment on impact of Kashagan delay, contract review

LONDON (Thomson Financial) – Royal Dutch Shell PLC would not comment on reports the Kazakhstan authorities will review the Kashagan oil field contract, in which Shell holds a 18.52 pct stake, after operator ENI SpA announced further delays to the project.

A Shell spokesman said he would also not comment on how the impact of the delay — the new start-up date in 2010 is two years later than scheduled — would affect its own production forecasts.

‘On the issue of timing, because we are not the operator we don’t comment,’ he said.

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Bloomberg: Crude Falls From One-Year High on Speculation Gains Unjustified

By Eduard Gismatullin

July 30 (Bloomberg) — Crude oil slipped from a one-year high in New York as some traders speculated last week’s gains were unjustified.

Oil rose 2.8 percent on July 27 after the U.S. government said the nation’s economy expanded 3.4 percent last quarter, the fastest pace in more than a year. Asian stock market declines helped push oil lower.

“People were worried a little bit about the equity outlook today,” said Rob Laughlin, a senior broker at MF Global Ltd. in London. “The market overdid itself on the rally. The market volatility actually got a little bit carried away with itself.”

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Bloomberg: Woodside Needs to Expand Pluto LNG to Raise Returns (Update1)

By Angela Macdonald-Smith

July 30 (Bloomberg) — Woodside Petroleum Ltd., Australia’s second-biggest oil and gas producer, will need to expand its proposed A$12 billion ($10.2 billion) Pluto liquefied natural gas project to improve returns on the investment, analysts said.

The Perth-based company needs to add a second and third LNG production unit to the project in Western Australia “to turn an OK project from an economic point of view into a good one,” said Frank Harris, global head of LNG at Wood Mackenzie Consultants Ltd. in Edinburgh.

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allAfrica.com: Nigeria: Oil Communities Rise Against Shell

Vanguard (Lagos)
30 July 2007
Emma Amaize
Warri

OIL producing communities in Ogbe-Ijoh Kingdom, Warri South-West local government area of Delta State, weekend, barred the Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) from resuming oil exploration and exploitation activities in their area until the rift between the kingdom and the Delta State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission (DESOPADEC) over the commission’s Ijaw national budget project allocation is resolved.

It was not clear, yesterday, why the problem with DESOPDEC should be visited on the SPDC but the community has a lingering dispute with the oil company.
 
Representatives of the communities, Andrew Anegba (Ogbe-Ijoh), Clarkson Aribogha (Odidi I and II), Samson Oyimi (Ajuju), Chief Balogun (Eweregbene), Clement Takedor (Egwa II, Takedor/Kusimi) and Abenego Sene (Ijansa/Ijelejele/Ekeremor federated communities) in a communique issued at the end of an emergency meeting in Ogbe-Ijoh, said there would be “no re-entry into Ogbe-Ijoh Kingdom oil producing communities fields, namely Odidi I, Odidi II, Egw II and Ajuja/Batan to resume oil exploration and exploitation activities until the exclusion of Ogbe-Ijoh Kingdom oil producing communities in the DESOPADEC Ijaw nationality budget project allocation is corrected”.

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MoneyCNN.com: Kazakh PM: Kashagan Delay Is Breach Of Contract – Report -2-

July 30, 2007: 02:59 AM EST

In addition to the delay to the start of production, Eni also notified the Kazakh government that the project’s costs would rise to $13.6 billion from $5.7 billion.

Kazakh Energy and Natural Resources Minister Baktykozha Izmukhambetov was quoted by Interfax as saying the government would hold a month-long negotiation with Eni in August over revised terms for Kashagan.

The recoverable oil reserves at Kashagan are estimated at a minimum of 7 billion-9 billion barrels and the total oil in place at 38 billion barrels.

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Hemscott / AFX News: Eni declines comment on Kazakhstan threat to revise Kashagan oil feld deal

30 July 2007 

MILAN (Thomson Financial) – Eni SpA declined to comment on remarks by Kazakhstan’s prime minister Karim Masimov about the possible revision of the Italian oil and gas group’s contract to develop the giant Kashagan oil field in the Caspian Sea.

‘We do not make comments on the (prime) minister’s remarks,’ a spokesperson for the Italian oil and gas group said.

Cited by Interfax, Masimov said that, as Eni has said it will postpone production until 2010, ‘we are reviewing how to change the entire contract’.

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The Brunei Times: Religious Course For Shell Oilfield Staff (*perhaps they heard about Shell’s policy of putting profits before employee safety?)

By Khairunnisa Ibrahim

Bandar Seri Begawan – A Group of Brunei Shell Petroleum employees stationed at the Champion 7 oilfield have signed on for a religious course to refine their knowledge and understanding of solat, or prayer.

The group – consisting of 36 men and 2 women – started the Fiqh As-Shalah course, organised by the Courses Unit, Courses and Women’s Guidance Division under the Islamic Da’wah Centre, on Saturday. They will continue their lessons today and on August 9, 13 and 25. According to an official statement from the centre, the course was organised by the officers’ own initiative, as they wished to improve the quality of their solat according to the teachings of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).

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Renew America: The New World Order: The Bilderberg plan — control oil, control people (Part 23)

Deanna Spingola
July 29, 2007

(*For details of Shell’s connection with the sinister Bilderberg Group, see Wikipedia information at the foot of this article)

THE ARTICLE: The New World Order: The Bilderberg plan — control oil, control people (Part 23)

There are arguments from both sides of the oil issue: either we are quickly running out of oil or we have adequate oil to meet our requirements for generations. Both sides offer evidence, witnesses, experts and documentation to validate their assertions. Some peak-oil projects, funded by oil companies, are highly suspect. The very credible Lindsey Williams maintains that the North Slope in Alaska has as much crude oil as Saudi Arabia. Governor Frank H. Murkowski said in 2005 that there is enough oil on the North Slope to supply the entire United States for 200 years. [1] Antony Sutton, author of Energy, the Created Crisis, is adamant that we have sufficient oil. Conversely, I have read reports which support the peak oil theory. I personally believe, after research, that “there is enough and to spare.” Doom and gloom, Chicken Little oil scarcity claims have been propagated from the beginning. A scarcity, authentic or manufactured, of any crucial commodity accomplishes the following:

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BBC Monitoring Service: Russian daily links diplomatic row with tighter monitoring of UK oil firms: Gazprom may demand compensation from Shell

EXTRACT: In addition, at Rosprirodnadzor’s demand, work on the construction of the oil pipeline under the Sakhalin-2 project was suspended yesterday for two weeks. The natural resources protection department accused the project operators – Sakhalin Energy – of allowing an error to occur in the layout of the drainage system along one sector.  Apart from that the company was caught laying pipes other than those specified under the project. Formally, this is damaging to Gazprom, which has a controlling stake in the project. However, given that a large part of the stake was acquired several months ago from UK’s Shell company, which retained 27.5 per cent in Sakhalin-2 as a result, the question arises whether Gazprom will demand some measure of compensation from the British side for the blunders that were made. Gazprom’s press office declined yesterday to comment to Nezavisimaya Gazeta on the situation, stating that it was Sakhalin Energy’s problem. 

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The Wall Street Journal: Energy, Once Hot, Now Not

wsj chart

Strains on Growth Turn
Sector Sentiment Sour;
But if Oil Goes to $80…
July 30, 2007; Page C1

After years of booming commodity prices, energy companies have pristine balance sheets, exceptional credit ratings and gargantuan free cash flows as they continue to enjoy near-record oil and natural-gas prices.

A good place to find growth amid the broader-market credit-crunch storm? Not really.

High energy prices have meant big profits for this sector, and that has accounted for roughly one-third of the market’s earnings growth in the past two years. But rising costs, increased international taxes and a dearth of good exploration opportunities are shrinking margins.

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The Guardian (UK): Manufacturing/energy

Monday July 30, 2007

In a sector this large and diverse, we expected a patchy response rate and companies performing badly. Those assumptions were wrong. This sector was among the best for working parents, an apparent reflection of these major employers’ need to hold on to skilled and motivated staff. Most of the firms we invited to contribute did so. We did have two reservations, however: Royal Dutch Shell has a very hefty clawback on his enhanced maternity pay, even though recipients have waited two years to qualify. And BP just scrapes in to the “above average” camp: its working mothers wait three years before qualifying for reasonably – though not greatly – enhanced maternity pay. And paternity pay is meagre.

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Business Day Online (Nigeria): Alpha Delta drags Shell, fg to court over revoked oil wells

Alpha Delta Oil and Gas Resources has asked the Court of Appeal to quash the federal high court decision refusing it as party in Shell Petroleum Development Company’s ( SPDC) suit against Federal Government over revocation of Oil Mining Leases (OMLs) 13 and 16

Nnorom oguchukwu

OMLs 13 and 16 initially awarded to SPDC were allegedly revoked by government that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) conducted fresh bidding ( in which Alpha Delta participated), prompting Shell’s court action.

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Vanguard (Nigeria): Oil communities rise against Shell

By Emma Amaize
Posted to the Web: Monday, July 30, 2007

WARRI—OIL producing communities in Ogbe-Ijoh Kingdom, Warri South-West local government area of Delta State, weekend, barred the Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) from resuming oil exploration and exploitation activities in their area until the rift between the kingdom and the Delta State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission (DESOPADEC) over the commission’s Ijaw national budget project allocation is resolved.

It was not clear, yesterday, why the problem with DESOPDEC should be visited on the SPDC but the community has a lingering dispute with the oil company.

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Manila Standard Today: Shell’s case stays with tax court

By Rey E. Requejo
Monday 30 July 2007

The Court of Appeals has affirmed its decision allowing the Court of Tax Appeals to resolve the petition filed by Pilipinas Shell Petroleum Corp. contesting the Bureau of Customs’ demand for payment of P936.8 million in custom duties for the importation of crude oil in 1996.

In a four-page resolution, the CA’s former First Division through Associate Justice Arcangelita Romilla-Lontok denied with finality the appeal for reconsideration filed by Customs seeking to reverse its Feb. 15, 2007 decision upholding the Jan. 17, 2003 resolution of the Court of Tax Appeals. In that resolution, the tax appeals court rejected a motion to dismiss the petition filed by Pilipinas Shell to declare the assessment null and void.

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