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Royal Dutch Shell News Monday 29 Sept 2014

Screen Shot 2014-09-29 at 14.02.38By John Donovan

A selection of current news articles about Royal Dutch Shell from around the globe:

Oil price fixing

According to a Bloomberg article published by energyvoice.com, the UK is considering whether to criminalize manipulation of the world’s most-traded crude-futures market.

Extract

The UK is toughening the rules after the rigging of Libor and related gauges resulted in $6.5 billion in fines for at least 10 companies. European Union antitrust authorities raided the offices of companies including BP Plc, Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Statoil ASA in May 2013 amid allegations of collusion and price manipulation in crude, refined products and biofuels markets.

Louisiana, USA

The St Charles Herald Guide has published an article under the headline: “1,000 plan to protest at Shell over emissions”

Extract

Around 1,000 protestors led by a former Army lieutenant general plan to picket the Shell asphalt plant in St. Rose after the state refused a request to implement air monitoring in the area. One Voice, a group formed in the aftermath of a 10-day emissions release by Shell in June, had asked St. Charles Parish to provide 24-hour air monitoring near the asphalt plant, which is located on IMTT’s campus in St. Rose. More than 130 people in the area said that the hydrogen sulfide released from the facility made them sick.

Stranded Assets

The NewYorker has published an article about the Rockefeller Brothers Fund. The part the interested me discussed the issue of “stranded assets” in relation :

Environmentalists and some scholars have pointed out that investors value energy companies based largely on the reserves of coal, gas, and oil that remain underground. They argue that as climate change gets more intense, governments will increasingly enact laws that make it difficult—even illegal—for companies to extract all those resources. Those fossil fuels could become, in other words, “stranded assets” that are, for all intents and purposes, useless. That could lower the stock prices of the energy companies that have made money by taking them out of the ground.

This argument had gained enough traction by May, 2014, that an executive at Shell, facing questions from investors, felt compelled to write a twenty-page letter dismissing it. In it, the company argued that growing populations and economic development in places like China and India would send energy demand higher, with “fossil fuels continuing to play a major role in the energy system.” The letter went on, “Shell does not believe that any of its proven reserves will become ‘stranded’ as a result of current or reasonably foreseeable future legislation concerning carbon.”

Shell’s Arctic Misadventures: the sequel 

An article published by Petroleum News discusses legal hurdles surrounding Shell’s plans to resume arctic exploration next year:

Shell hopes to continue its Chukchi Sea exploration drilling program in the summer of 2015, presumably starting in July, after sea ice has retreated from the region. But, to achieve that target, the company must presumably start activating its drilling fleet several months earlier, an operation involving significant work effort and cost.

Shell’s Arctic plans and its related contact with the White House, are the subject of an article by nationaljournal.com “Inside Big Oil’s Fight Over Arctic Drilling Rules”

Extract

Shell began preliminary operations in the neighboring Chukchi and Beaufort seas in 2012, but suffered several setbacks and never won regulators’ permission to drill into oil-bearing subsea layers. A spill containment dome was damaged during testing off Washington state’s coast, and a drilling rig ran aground in December on its way back from the Arctic region. White House Office of Management and Budget records show that Shell officials and lobbyists including Pete Slaiby, the company’s vice president for Alaska operations, met Sept. 10 with aides for OMB and several other White House branches to discuss the upcoming rules.

Shell is named in a recent New York Times article about companies making political donations.

The Clarion-Ledger covers the same story.

Extract

Companies listed with cabinet level access include: Aflac, BlueCross BlueShield, Comcast, Hewlett-Packard, Novartis, Shell Oil, Verizon and Walgreens.

An environmentalist website has published an article warning: “Investors should be concerned that oil giant Shell is seeking increased regulatory flexibility for drilling in the Arctic, according to responsible investment charity ShareAction.”

India

Bidness Etc has published an article examining the recent deal between Shell and Gulf Petroleum to buy Shell’s Specialty Bitumen assets in India, as part of the Anglo-Dutch company’s fire sale of under-performing assets.

Norway

An Upstreamonline article says:

Shell has been given the nod by Norway’s petroleum agency to drill an appraisal at its Ormen Lange field in the southern Norwegian Sea.

Nigeria

According to a Nigerian Guardian article, Shell’s exit Strategy from Ogoniland is stirring controversy.

Brief extracts

Troubled on many fronts after decades of its operations (mainly during the military era), mixed reactions now trail Shell’s ‘alleged’ plan to sell off its 30 percent holding and those of Total (10 percent) and ENI (five percent) in OML 11, located in the heart of Ogoni region of Rivers State. THE multinational oil firm has been grappling with decades of frosty relations squabbles with the Ogonis as a result of oil spill and other environment-related ‘offences,’ forcing it to shut down the majority of the 23 fields on the bloc.

Abu Dhabi

According to an article published by The Telegraph: Royal Dutch Shell and BP are in the final running for a fiercely fought-over deal to operate some of the biggest onshore oil fields in the Persian Gulf, in what would be potentially a major triumph for British business in the region.

Somalia

Reuters reports that Shell is one of the companies funding an initiative to lure youth away from piracy.

Mexico

The Wall Street Journal says “Shell’s Experience in Mexico Could Help It Make a Deal in Gulf”:

Extract

CANCÚN, Mexico—Mexico’s energy overhaul will soon open up the abundant oil and gas lying beneath very deep waters in its side of the Gulf of Mexico, and few international companies are better positioned to grab the opportunity than Royal Dutch Shell PLC

It has been doing business in Mexico for decades, and has a 20-year partnership with Pemex, Mexico’s national oil company, in a refinery near Houston.

More to the point, Shell,…

Gulf of Mexico

An article published by Seeking alpha asked and answers the question: “How Important Is Cardamom Field For Shell?”

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