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Peak oil? Majors aren’t buying into the threat from renewables

Ernest Scheyder, Ron Bousso: NOVEMBER 8, 2017 HOUSTON/LONDON (Reuters) – Two decades ago, BP set out to transcend oil, adopting a sunburst logo to convey its plans to pour $8 billion over a decade into renewable technologies, even promising to power its gas stations with the sun. That transformation – marketed as “Beyond Petroleum” – led to manufacturing solar panels in Australia, Spain and the United States and erecting wind farms in the United States and the Netherlands. Today, BP (BP.L) might be more aptly branded “Back to Petroleum” after exiting or scaling back its renewable energy investments. Lower-cost Chinese components upended its solar panel business, which the firm shed in 2011. A year later, BP tried to sell its U.S. wind power business but couldn’t get a buyer. FULL ARTICLE
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Why Royal Dutch Shell’s Value Increased by $10 Billion in October

Shell has had a great year, and October added to the up trend, even though there wasn’t much actual news.

Reuben Gregg Brewer (TMFReubenGBrewer) Nov 6, 2017 at 4:32PM

However, since around July and August, Shell has been on a tear. There are two parts to this solid showing. First, oil has been heading in a generally upward direction since about that point. Shell is a commodity company, so energy prices will be a big piece of the performance puzzle. But second, and perhaps more important, Shell appears to be executing well. For example, it has made material headway on its debt reduction goals, which is being driven by asset sales. The oil major has also notably improved its return on capital employed, which has been hindered in recent years by high-profile misses like a now-curtailed effort to drill in the Arctic. The company also posted strong second-quarter earnings results, which fellow Fool Tyler Crowe described at the time as “turn[ing] on the cash flow tap.” FULL ARTICLE read more

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Shell Swallows BG Group Whole Hog, Rolls Up Cash Flow

Ray Merola: Nov. 6, 2017

Summary

  • Shell is enjoying a remarkably successful corporate resurgence.
  • Legacy BG Group opex and capex has been absorbed entirely without a loss of combined hydrocarbon volumes.
  • Cash is king.
  • Debt is trending down.  The dividend is well-covered.  Returns are solid, and improving.
  • I remain constructive on RDS stock.

FULL ARTICLE

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Royal Dutch Shell: The Cash Machine

 Nov. 6, 2017 12:35 PM ET

Summary

  • Royal Dutch Shell has reported nearly 50% increase in profits following improvement in energy prices which fueled a turnaround of its upstream division.
  • In the first three quarters of 2017, Royal Dutch Shell generated $15.42 billion of free cash flows (ex. working cap. changes), surpassing even the industry’s cash flow king Exxon Mobil.
  • Oil prices have climbed to almost $61 a barrel and could stay at this level in the future, which could give a major boost to Shell’s earnings and cash flows.
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    Shell beats profit forecasts, targets lower 2017 spending

    Ron Bousso

    LONDON (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) reported an 18 percent rise in third-quarter profit on Tuesday, lowering next year’s capital spending to the bottom of the expected range as it grapples with persistently low oil prices and weak refining margins. The Anglo-Dutch oil major, whose acquisition of BG Group transformed it into the world’s top liquefied natural gas producer, has been under pressure from shareholders to cut annual spending to ensure it can maintain its dividend given the slow recovery in the oil prices LCOc1. “Lower oil prices continue to be a significant challenge across the business, and the outlook remains uncertain,” Chief Executive Officer Ben van Beurden said in a statement. FULL ARTICLE read more

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    Amid Low Prices, Oil Giants Gush About Breaking Even

    By Sarah Kent: Dow Jones Newswires

    The world’s biggest oil companies have a suddenly popular measure for success: breaking even. Once obscure and little noted, the break-even number has become an obsession for investors in oil giants such as Exxon Mobil Corp., BP PLC and Chevron Corp. as crude prices stay mired between $50 and $60 a barrel. At its simplest, the metric represents the oil price that a company needs to generate enough cash so it can cover its capital spending and dividend payouts. read more

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    Iraq may offer Total, Chevron terms different from Shell for Majnoon field development

    OCTOBER 21, 2017

    BAGHDAD (Reuters) – Iraq may offer Chevron (CVX.N) and Total (TOTF.PA) terms to develop the Majnoon oilfield different from those it had given to Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L), Iraqi Oil Minister Jabar al-Luaibi said on Saturday. Iraq will develop the Majnoon oil field in southern Iraqi by its own means until it can find a foreign partner, Luaibi told reporters, adding that no company has been selected yet. Luaibi said on Oct. 9 that Chevron and Total are among the companies that have expressed interest in developing Majnoon that Shell has said it wants to leave because of unfavourable changes to fiscal terms. Reporting by Ahmed Rasheed, writing by Maher Chmaytelli; Editing by Angus MacSwan. SOURCE read more

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    Chevron starts LNG output at Australia’s Wheatstone, first cargo expected in weeks

    MELBOURNE, Oct 9 (Reuters) – Chevron Corp said on Monday it has started producing liquefied natural gas (LNG) at its Wheatstone project in Australia, slightly later than expected, and plans to ship its first cargo soon. The LNG market will be focused on how smoothly Wheatstone progresses following the troubled start-up at Chevron’s bigger Gorgon LNG project. Both projects are fed from natural gas fields offshore the state of Western Australia. “The first cargo is on track to be shipped in the coming weeks,” Chevron Corp said in a statement. It had originally hoped to start exporting from Wheatstone in middle of 2017. Wheatstone is the sixth out of eight projects in a $200 billion Australian LNG construction boom that is now in its final stretch. The two remaining ones are Royal Dutch Shell’s Prelude floating LNG project and Ichthys, led by Japan’s Inpex. FULL ARTICLE read more

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    Oil Majors Face Lawsuits on Climate Change Issues

    The companies have been accused of causing an adverse impact on the climate, resulting in global warming. The plaintiffs hold these fossil fuel companies accountable for rising sea levels, changing landscapes, higher global temperatures and increased risk of storms and droughts. The cities are located on the opposite sides of San Francisco Bay, and the lawsuit claims that the region’s water level is already on the rise. If the companies lose the case, they will be liable to pay billions of dollars in fines. Though the lawsuits do not specify the compensation amount, updating San Francisco’s seawall alone could cost up to $5 billion. FULL ARTICLE read more

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    Australia closing in on Qatar as world’s top LNG exporter

    * Australia LNG exports tipped to rise to 74 mt in 2018-19

    * Australia’s share of Japan, Korea LNG imports seen growing

    * Iron ore price forecast raised to $64 for 2017

    SYDNEY, Oct 6 (Reuters) – Australia expects to increase exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) by 16 percent from mid-2018 as $180 billion in new projects hit their stride, nearly catching up with Qatar, the world’s top supplier.

    Rising LNG exports coupled with higher prices for steel-making commodities and thermal coal should see Australia’s overall resource and energy export earnings increase 2 percent in the year to end-June 2018, to a record A$211 billion ($165 billion), the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science said on Friday. read more

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    Citizens must “flood the courts” in fight for climate justice: economist

    Adela Suliman: OCTOBER 4, 2017

    LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – The world faces a ticking time bomb in the form of global warming, and recent disasters caused by extreme weather should motivate individuals to urgently seek “climate justice”, said leading U.S. economist Jeffrey Sachs.

    The U.N. special adviser urged citizens to “flood the courts” with legal cases demanding the right to a safe and clean environment, and to pursue major polluters such as big oil companies and negligent governments for liability and damages. read more

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    California cities sue big oil firms over climate change

    Gary McWilliams: SEPTEMBER 21, 2017 / 2:34 AM

    (Reuters) – California cities San Francisco and Oakland filed separate lawsuits against five oil companies on Wednesday seeking billions of dollars to protect against rising sea levels they blamed on climate change, according to public documents. The lawsuits, filed in state courts in San Francisco and Alameda Counties, alleged Chevron Corp, ConocoPhillips, Exxon Mobil Corp, BP Plc, and Royal Dutch Shell Plc, created a public nuisance and asked for funds to finance infrastructure to deal with rising sea levels. According to a news release from San Francisco city officials, the lawsuits mirror 1980s-era lawsuits against tobacco companies. They allege the oil giants “knowingly and recklessly created an ongoing public nuisance that is causing harm now and in the future risks catastrophic harm to human life and property.” FULL ARTICLE read more

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    San Francisco sues Big Oil for billions over climate change claiming they knew the dangers for decades

    The US cities of San Francisco and Oakland are suing five of the world’s largest oil companies for the coasts of walls and other defences against rising sea levels, saying the industry made vast profits from fossil fuels while knowing they were causing “an existential threat to humankind”.

    Drawing a direct comparison to the tobacco industry’s sale of cigarettes despite knowledge of the health risks, the city attorneys announced they had filed separate lawsuits against BP, Royal Dutch Shell, Exxon Mobil, Chevron and ConocoPhillips. read more

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    SF, Oakland sue top five oil and gas companies over climate change

    By on September 20, 2017 10:59 am

    The cities of San Francisco and Oakland have filed separate lawsuits against five major oil and gas companies for allegedly contributing to the costs of climate change and sea level rise by producing massive amounts of fossil fuels, city leaders announced Wednesday.

    FULL ARTICLE

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    Big Oil Becomes Greener With Cuts to Greenhouse Gas Pollution

    The five biggest oil companies — Exxon Mobil Corp., Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Chevron Corp., BP Plc and Total SA — collectively curbed their pollution by an average of 13 percent between 2010 and 2015, the report said. BP cut the most at 25.5 percent. Exxon, the largest emitter among listed companies, pushed it down by 14 percent. FULL ARTICLE

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    What You Missed in Royal Dutch Shell plc’s Quarterly Report

    What Shell looks like now

    There’s no question about how Royal Dutch Shell makes money. It is one of the world’s largest oil and natural gas drillers, with a large footprint in liquified natural gas. Oil and gas have been the driving force, broadly speaking, throughout all of the company’s over 100-years of existence. Investor questions generally focus on what management is doing to support and grow its core operations. FULL ARTICLE

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