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Posts from ‘October, 2010’

Dirty Oil

Senators raise concerns on oil sands pipeline

By Ayesha Rascoe

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Nearly a dozen U.S. Senators on Friday raised questions about the need for a proposed $7 billion pipeline that they said will bring “dirty oil” from Canadian oil sands to U.S. refineries and significantly increase the country’s reliance on fossil fuels.

The lawmakers, 10 Democrats and one independent, said the State Department needs to answer several key questions before deciding whether to approve TransCanada’s application to build the 2,000-mile Keystone XL pipeline.

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Royal Dutch Shell trading with the enemy, Iran

Contribution from a former employee of Shell Oil USA

Both the UK and the US have statutes entitled: ‘Trading with the Enemy Act’. The UK’s was passed in 1939 and the US’s in 1917.

Royal Dutch Shell’s army of attorney’s have obviously found loop holes in these and other statutes that allow Shell to continue to trade with Iran. That trade is of far greater value to Iran than it is to Shell, for it gives Iran the means to continue with their weapons development programs.

Perhaps it is time for the UK Parliament and US Congress to plug some of those loop holes to prevent the kind of conduct Royal Dutch Shell finds so profitable.

RECENT RELATED NEWS ARTICLES

Shell OK with dealing in Iranian crude

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Operating Blind in Deepwater

An analysis of the sequence of events on the 20th April which led to the disaster on Deepwater Horizon

By Bill Campbell, Retired HSE Group Auditor, Royal Dutch Shell.

Operating Blind in Deepwater

Only minutes before the blowout on Deepwater Horizon on 20th April everything was reported as being in order.  The negative pressure test of the integrity of the well had been good and the displacement of seawater after this test was going fine.

But just 25 minutes after this reassuring message was passed to the senior toolpusher, mud started to overflow from the well onto the drill floor.  With only seconds to act and do the right thing mistakes were made which allowed gas to be ingested into areas of the rig where sources of ignition were present.  Actions that could have been taken to prevent the ignition of the gas were not taken and four minutes after the blowout commenced most of the crew, on or near the drill floor, were killed in the first explosion.

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Shell profits flow faster as oil prices rise and new ventures deliver

guardian.co.uk home

Canadian oil sands field starts production and projects are planned in the Gulf of Mexico – where BP’s Deepwater disaster has so far cost Shell $115m

Tim Webb: Friday 29 October 2010

Trucks carry loads of oil-laden sand in Alberta, Canada, where Shell has 13 projects scheduled to come on stream. Photograph: Jeff Mcintosh/AP

Shell nearly doubled earnings in the last three months thanks to higher oil prices and production as new ventures came on stream. Excluding write-offs made for accounting purposes, its earnings were $4.9bn (£3.1bn) for the three months to September, compared with $2.6bn the previous year.

During the quarter the company began production at its oil sands mine in Jackpine, northern Alberta, part of its programme to add another 100,000 barrels a day from these operations. Jackpine is the fifth start-up of 13 projects that have been approved and are scheduled to come on stream this year and next. Shell hopes they will allow it to achieve its target of increasing its 2009 production by 11% by 2012. The company has spent $190bn in its operations since 2004 – almost double the capital investment over the preceding five years – which it hopes will reverse several years of falling production.

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Inquiry Puts Halliburton in a Familiar Hot Seat

By BARRY MEIER and CLIFFORD KRAUSS

A version of this article appeared in print on October 29, 2010, on page A20 of the New York edition.

Halliburton is back in the spotlight, and once again, in an uncomfortable way.

In recent years, the giant energy services company has found itself under scrutiny over allegations that it performed shoddy, overpriced work for the United States military in Iraq, bribed Nigerian officials to win energy contracts and did brisk business with Iran at time when it faced sanctions.

On Thursday, a government investigation panel said that Halliburton might have played an important role in the April explosion of the Deepwater Horizon platform in the Gulf of Mexico by supplying cement that the company knew was unstable to BP, which used it to seal the well. Halliburton has repeatedly blamed BP, the owner of the well, of failing to test the cement and making other errors that led to the accident, which killed 11 people and spewed millions of barrels of crude oil into the gulf.

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Retired Shell Global Chief Petroleum Engineer Iain Percival speaks out…

Comment by Iain Percival on Bloomberg article…

Shell Says Repercussions of U.S. Drilling Moratorium Could Last Into 2012

Messers Pals & Kennedy of Bloomberg really ought to research a topic before writing about it. Just what is meant by “Shell is targeting hard-to-reach rock formations in Australia, the U.S. and China”? Coal seams for CBM in Australia are not in the criteria of hard-to-reach. There are undoubtedly challenges in the optimal exploitation of CBM but the technology / techniques are hardly new or “hard-to-apply”. In any case the geoscience and engineering capability in Shell is more than enough to address the task. My comment applies equally well to the (presumably) tight gas assets in North America and China. The tone of the article implies Shell will have trouble delivering meaningful gas production from these “hard-to-reach” formations. Yes, the technical challenge is greater than with conventional gas, but then Shell has invested serious money in researching the technologies and techniques required. Will Bloomberg reporters write an article in the same vein throwing doubt on the ability of the BG-Group to deliver from similar formations in the same countries? One thing is for sure, the BG-Group do not have recourse to the R&D back up in-house to Shell.

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Royal Dutch Shell writes off $1B in oilsands assets

Royal Dutch Shell is assigning higher priority to its Carmon Creek in situ project near Peace River and its ongoing expansion at the Athabasca Oil Sands Project near Fort McMurray, said chief financial officer Simon Henry. Photograph by: BEN STANSALL, AFP/Getty Images

CALGARY – Royal Dutch Shell is writing off about $1 billion in oilsands assets, including some bought with BlackRock Ventures of Calgary in 2006, after evaluating and shifting focus to other northern Alberta projects.

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Shell Profits Surge 88% On Higher Output,Refining

OCTOBER 28, 2010

By James Herron Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES

LONDON (Dow Jones)–Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RDSB.LN) Thursday beat analysts’ forecasts to post an 88.4% rise in adjusted profit for the third quarter, driven by higher output and greater demand for refined products and chemicals.

The results show how the company is reaping the rewards of a lengthy restructuring focused on cost efficiency and recovering industrial demand, primarily in Asia.

“Our results have rebounded substantially from year-ago levels,” said Shell’s Chief Executive Peter Voser.

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Shell OK with dealing in Iranian crude

Published: Oct. 28, 2010

LONDON, Oct. 28 (UPI) — Royal Dutch Shell is still dealing with Iranian crude oil shipments under current contracts, the company’s chief financial officer said Thursday.

Simon Henry, Shell’s top financial official, said his company was still taking delivery of Iranian crude oil under the terms of its existing contracts with the Islamic republic.

The European Union and United States passed new sanctions in July that target Iran’s energy sector, though Henry said the sanctions didn’t deal with trading in Iranian crude.

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Royal Dutch Shell confirms that it is continuing to trade with Iran

Shell studies oil trade impact of EU Iran sanctions

By Alex Lawler

LONDON | Thu Oct 28, 2010 7:47am EDT

(Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSa.L) said it would assess any impact of European sanctions on its oil trade with Iran and had stopped some activities there following tougher U.S. measures earlier this year.

The European Union sanctions over Iran’s nuclear work, launched in July and which became law this week, seek to block oil and gas investment in the Islamic Republic, the world’s fifth largest oil exporter.

“Our trading business with Iran is carried out under longer-term contracts,” Shell’s chief financial officer, Simon Henry, said on Thursday. “We continue to lift (buy Iranian crude) under those contracts, but we do need to assess any implications of the European legislation.”

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Shell Says Repercussions of U.S. Drilling Moratorium Could Last Into 2012

Bloomberg

By Fred Pals and Eduard Gismatullin – Oct 28, 2010 11:53 AM GMT+0100

Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Europe’s largest oil company, warned that the knock-on effects of the temporary ban on new deep-water drilling in the Gulf of Mexico could last for the next two years.

Shell has booked charges of $115 million to date after idling rigs and expects further losses in the fourth quarter, Chief Financial Officer Simon Henry said today. Daily output from the region, which accounts for about a third of Shell’s total production in the Americas, will be 40,000 barrels less than previously expected in 2011.

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Royal Dutch Shell To Sell Majority Of Refining, Marketing Businesses

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b4XtK6zTpNc&feature=youtube_gdata

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