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Posts under ‘Corporate Governance’

Shell two-faced on ethical trading

While pretending to be at the forefront of ethical trading, trumpeting claimed business principles, including honesty, integrity, and transparency, Shell was responsible for a grubby spying and intelligence gathering campaign targeting Anita Roddick and her company.  

By John Donovan

Yesterday, The Sunday Times contained an eight page independent feature – FUTURE OF RETAIL. The first page focussed on ethical trading under the headline: “Ethical commerce is in demand and on the rise” with a sub-headline: “Business should be ethical to do the right thing and not just because it may make money”. Authored by Ian Burrell, the article commences and concludes with paragraphs devoted to the famed ethical entrepreneur Dame Anita Roddick, the founder of The Body Shop. read more

Shell News Update 20 June 2017

Collapsing oil prices could fall into the $30s before the selling stops, analysts say: CNBC: 20 June 2017

Oil prices could slide back into the $30s per barrel before the sell-off ends and prices stabilize, analysts said, bringing pain to both OPEC and its archrival — the U.S. shale industry.

Exxon, BP and Shell back carbon tax proposal to curb emissions: The Guardian: 20 June 2017

In a full-page newspaper ad on Tuesday, the companies called for a “consensus climate solution that bridges partisan divides, strengthens our economy and protects our shared environment”. Exxon and the others were listed as founding members of the plan…

Shell Nigeria considering investment in gas project in Niger Delta: Reuters: 20 June 2017

Osagie Okunbor, managing director of Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria (SPDC), said the project under consideration would have a capacity of 300 million cubic feet and would be located in the city of Asa. read more

Shell News Update 14 June 2017

Shell gets $142m tax refund in UK as decommissioning bills mount: The Herald: 14 June 2017

Around $116m of the refund appears to be due to the relief provided to Shell for the costs of decommissioning work completed on the giant Brent field north east of Shetland.

Shell’s report says it has ‘zero tolerance’ on bribery and corruption: The National: 13 June 2017

Shell’s code of conduct includes specific instructions to staff and mandatory training “especially with respect to potential conflicts of interest and the offer or acceptance of gifts and hospitality”. “Our anti-bribery commitment is an integral part of the Shell General Business
Principles, first published in 1976.

Gov. Tom Wolf tours Shell cracker plant site, impressed by speed and scale of work: The Times: 14 June 2017

POTTER TWP. — Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf is impressed by the speed and scale of the work being undertaken by the workforce building Shell Chemicals’ $6 billion ethane cracker plant. read more

Shell Corporate Espionage?

Several years ago I corresponded with senior Royal Dutch Shell lawyers concerning allegations made by a former employee of Shell Oil Company, Mr Frank Joseph Trunk III., about alleged Shell sponsored industrial espionage.

The ingenious Mr Trunk filed for patents in the 1990’s and early 2000’s that define certain novel technologies with important dual use (military and civilian) applications.

It is quite likely that in a related move Shell tried to patent the use of spread spectrum signaling for controlling a BOP in a noisy environment, based on the number of other things they tried to patent disclosed to them under confidentiality agreements. Digital spread spectrum acoustic signaling is also used in a number of naval/military applications. read more

Shell false pledges of transparency and openness

By John Donovan

Shell chief executive Ben van Beurden says that he believes in the fundamental importance of openness by Shell. This echo’s comments made previously by Jorma Ollila when he was Chairman of Royal Dutch Shell Plc. He said in a speech at the 2014 AGM “Shell believes in transparency and your board has high levels of commitment to this.”

Unfortunately Shell senior management deeds do not, in practice, match their lofty words.

On 22 May I wrote to Shell Legal Director Donny Ching asking him to instruct Shell US lawyers Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP, to release for use in the Dutch courts over 100,000 items of evidence gathered by Shell internally in relation to its past conduct in Nigeria. Alleged human rights abuses, including alleged complicity in the murder of Ogoni leaders. read more

Shell board confronted by pensioner welfare question from Paddy Briggs

RETIRED SHELL EXEC PADDY BRIGGS

Shell board confronted by pensioner welfare question from Paddy Briggs

Regular visitors may recall my article published in December 2016 Shell cost-cutting plan will undermine the welfare of its pensioners. 

It included an extract from a Facebook posting on the subject by retired Shell executive Paddy Briggs (right). Paddy confronted the Shell board on the subject yesterday. As is evident from the response in the transcript below, they seemed ill-prepared for the question, which compared huge sums paid to Shell directors such as Ben van Beurden with welfare cuts being made to Shell pensioners. As a result of his intervention, the board has agreed to review the issue he raised.   read more

Shell News Headlines 23 May 2017

Shell to sell C$4.1 billion stake in Canadian Natural -sources: REUTERS/DAILY MAIL: 23 May 2017

Royal Dutch Shell Plc has decided to offload a roughly C$4.1 billion ($3 billion) stake in Canadian Natural Resources Ltd (CNRL) that it acquired as part of a deal to retreat from Canada’s oil sands earlier this year, people familiar with the situation told Reuters.

Shell defeats activist uprising as it faces down rising climate concerns: THE TELEGRAPH: 23 MAY 2017

Royal Dutch Shell has convincingly defeated a climate activist uprising after facing down one of its most bitter stand-offs with shareholders over its climate goals. Around 94pc of shareholders voted down a special resolution calling for the oil giant to set and publish annual targets to reduce carbon emissions at its AGM in the Hague on Tuesday. The board also survived a vote on executive pay which was backed by 93pc of shareholders. read more

OPL 245: DONNY CHING LIVING IN A WORLD OF ALTERNATIVE FACTS

Bill Campbell comments on OPL 245 Statement by Shell Legal Director Donny Ching

Chronology is important is it not!

The international law firm reported to the RDS board in July 2016 but the emails confirming Shell knew money was going to individuals was not exposed till April 2017 a year later and was confirmed by the statement from the Shell spokesman to be an accepted fact in his 10th April 2017 press statement.

So did the international law firm who we are to assume gave a positive message to the Board have no knowledge of these emails in 2016?

Ching seems to be living in the world of alternative facts, his statements in the article above that Shell had no visibility into all this and payments were made without their prior knowledge or authorisation by Shell totally contradicts what RDS has already admitted on record in April this year. read more

Embarrassing facts Shell omitted from its history

Extract from page 10 (with our amendments in italics)

HISTORY

From 1907 until 2005, Royal Dutch Petroleum Company and The “Shell” Transport and Trading Company, p.l.c. were the two public parent companies of a group of companies known collectively as the “Royal Dutch/Shell Group”. In 2005, the Donovan’s beat us to the domain name “RoyalDutchShellGroup.com” and we lost a costly legal battle to seize it.

Operating activities were conducted through the subsidiaries of these parent companies. In 2005, Royal Dutch Shell plc became the single parent company of Royal Dutch Petroleum Company and of The “Shell” Transport and Trading Company, p.l.c., now The Shell Transport and Trading Company Limited. In 2005, the Donovan’s beat us to the domain name “RoyalDutchShellPlc.com” and we lost a costly legal battle to seize it. Royal Dutch Shell plc (the Company) is a public limited company registered in England and Wales and headquartered in The Hague, the Netherlands. read more

SHELL REPUTATIONAL RISKS

SHELL REPUTATIONAL RISKS

How fortunate that Shell has not got itself mired in any murky activity. e.g. paying hundreds of millions to a Nigerian crook, putting profits before safety with induced earthquakes in The Netherlands, terrorising safety staff in Norway, spying globally on its own employees, or engaging in widespread bribery and corruption in Ireland. None of that could possibly happen. Same applies to the oil and gas reserves fraud, which Donny Ching, to his credit, has not forgotten

The following information is taken directly from Shell’s Annual Report for the year ended December 31, 2016

From page 14

An erosion of our business reputation could have a material adverse effect on our brand, our ability to secure new resources and our licence to operate. read more

CURRENT LITIGATION INVOLVING SHELL

The following information is taken directly from Shell’s Annual Report for the year ended December 31, 2016

PESTICIDE LITIGATION

Shell Oil Company (SOC), along with other agricultural chemical pesticide manufacturers and distributors, has been sued by public and quasi-public water purveyors alleging responsibility for groundwater contamination caused by applications of chemical pesticides. Most of these law suits assert various theories of strict liability and seek to recover actual damages, including water well treatment and remediation costs. All of the suits assert claims for punitive damages. There are approximately 30 such cases pending. Based on the claims asserted and SOC’s track record with regard to amounts paid to resolve varying claims, management does not expect that the outcome of these suits pending at December 31, 2016, will have a material impact on Shell, although no assurance can be provided. read more

OPL 245: SHELL MI6 LOOSE CHATTER

Introduction by John Donovan

Published below are comments by Mr Bill Campbell, the retired HSE Group Auditor of Royal Dutch Shell. His remarks are in relation to the involvement of Shell and current?/former MI6 officers in the OPL 245 skulduggery currently involving multiple regulatory and legal authorities, including the Dutch Director of Public Prosecution and Dutch Police, the UK Serious Fraud Office, Italian and Nigerian Police and Prosecutors, the US Securities And Exchange Commission, and an investigation by the US Department of Justice under The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. read more

Withering Assessment of Shell’s Business Principles by Paddy Briggs

Comment by retired Shell executive *Paddy Briggs on the recent article: Withering Assessments of Shell’s Business Integrity by Bill Campbell and Bruce Culpepper

“I think Mr Campbell’s comment regarding “Business Principles” is entirely valid. I worked for a time in Shell in the business sphere which developed the (then) Group’s approach to the demands for “Corporate Social Responsibility” (CSD). I took it seriously as did many of my colleagues. The “Business Principles” were a part of what we delivered. It was endorsed by the Committee of Managing Directors (CMD) and became Group policy. What was lacking, however, was consistency in application. All too often, when push came to shove, the Principles were bent to allow the pragmatic pursuit of commercial goals. Shell’s competitors generally did not feel the need to promote their CSD or did so in a more limited way. Shell in some instances wanted it both ways. They wanted to be seen as corporately responsible, but they also wanted commercial progress. The pursuit of profit. Nothing wrong with the latter of course, it’s what business is about. But to do this at the cost of corporate responsibility at the same time as promoting your unique commitment to CSD reeks of hypocrisy” read more

More analysis of wiretapped BvB/Simon Henry phone call

By Bill Campbell (Retired HSE Group Auditor Shell International)

I have read through the Ben van Beurden/Simon Henry phone transcript but frankly cannot understand the apparently relaxed attitude, with many chuckles and laughter on the phone.

It seems clear also that RDS had been or were still pursuing some kind of internal investigation into the matter.

They raised but then thought lightly it would seem, of the emails that are incriminating, as though these did not involve their own employees whether direct or indirect, ex MI6 etc. read more

OPL 245: Repeated warnings about the Integrity of Malcolm Brinded 

Below are some of the articles we have published about Brinded and his blind eye policy over the years. Was it the same blind eye approach to the corrupt activities in the OPL 245 deal, or were his actions incriminating? Personally, I doubt that he received a cut. Being unscrupulously ambitious is one thing. Being a crook is another.

By John Donovan

No one has issued more warnings that we have on this website about the integrity of Malcolm Brinded, often in conjunction with comments by the retired Shell International HSE Group Auditor, Bill Campbell.

Shown right is a self-explanatory “WANTED” poster we have had on permanent display on our websites for years and featured in many articles. Please also read the related 20-page forensic indictment by Bill Campbell published on 6 March 2015 under the title: The Case against Malcolm Brinded CBE. It was about the “Touch Fuck All” Brent Bravo scandal and cover-up stretching back to 1999, which cost the lives of Shell workers. read more

Court orders Shell-Exxon criminal probe over Dutch gas quakes

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