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Shell’s Nigerian Quagmire

Bearing in mind the avalanche of recent news stories about Shell’s Nigerian problems, it is interesting to reflect on the content of a 93-page report by WAC Global Services commissioned by Shell over a decade ago. I can only assume that no one at Shell bothered to pay attention to the warnings in the report arising from its evil activities feeding corruption, violence and pollution.

Some extracts

(Please note SCIN = SHELL COMPANIES IN NIGERIA)

From page 8

It is easy to conclude that any type of company or trade bringing resources to the Niger Delta will be confronted with the same problem. While this view is valid, it is also true that the manner in which the SCIN operates and it staff behaves creates, feeds into, or exacerbates conflict. After over 50 years in Nigeria, it is therefore reasonable to say that SCIN has become an integral part of the Niger Delta conflict system.

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Shell News Saturday 25 March 2017

EXTRACT: A whistleblower has accused oil giant Shell of concealing data on the health effects of two major oil spills on communities in Nigeria. In a letter seen by the Independent, Kay Holtzmann, a former employee at the company, said data gathered in the Bodo community which was devastated by two huge oil spills in 2008 and 2009, showed levels of pollution were “astonishingly high”. He also accused the company of refusing to make the findings public. Mr Holtzmann was the former director in charge of Shell’s project to clean up oil spills…

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More Shell News Friday 24 March 2017

Geologist for Shell says company hid Nigeria spill dangers: Associated Press

Royal Dutch Shell’s Nigeria subsidiary “fiercely opposed” environmental testing and is concealing data showing thousands of Nigerians are exposed to health hazards from a stalled cleanup of the worst oil spills in the West African nation’s history, according to a German geologist contracted by the Dutch-British multinational.

Shell says to start cleaning up 2008 Nigeria oil spills in April: Seeking Alpha

The head of a group helping organize Royal Dutch Shell’s (RDS.A, RDS.B) clean-up of 2008 oil spills at a Nigerian Delta community says he hopes work can begin next monthShell agreed in 2015 on a £55M ($68.6M) settlement with the Bodo community after accepting liability for two pipeline leaks…

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Shell News Stories Friday 24 March 2017

Shell sells onshore Gabon oil assets to Carlyle for $587 mln: Reuters/Daily Mail

EXTRACT: For Shell, the deal marks a further step in a $30 billion asset disposal programme to help cut debt after its $54 billion acquisition of BG Group last year. The Anglo-Dutch oil company has sold assets for more than $15 billion since 2016.

WSJ: Shell report cites “astonishingly high” pollution from Nigerian oil spills: Seeking Alpha

EXTRACT: Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B) oil spills that have not been cleaned up for more than eight years have contributed to “astonishingly high” levels of pollution in a Nigerian community, WSJ reports, citing a consultant who helped produce a confidential damage assessment for the company and its partners. The former director of the cleanup project says Shell has denied him permission to publish the study’s results, which dictated a need for health screenings in the Bodo community.

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Shell oil sands exit, mired in OPL 245 scandal, wary over Iranian Oil

Links below to a selection of news stories posted on
our sister website royaldutchshellgroup.com.

They include, among other developments, news that Shell is rightly wary of buying more Iranian crude oil. This is because of the legal minefield relating to sanctions. 

Also coverage of the latest news about the OPL 245 Nigerian corruption scandal involving Shell and ENI.

Plus Shell’s fire sale of most of its Canadian oil sands operations and the jump in total pay for Shell CEO Ben van Beurden, an issue likely to be raised at the forthcoming AGM. 

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Employees Exposed to Benzene Contamination at Shell Nyhamna Gas Plant

An investigation by the safety division at the Shell Nyhamna Gas Plant in Norway discovered that many employees carried out maintenance in areas where Benzene concentration was far over the limit for required safety gear, such as over-pressured fresh air mask, and total body protection. The investigation found that from October 2007 until September 2014 Shell had not enforced Norwegian law requiring systematic chemical monitoring. Benzene is carcinogenic to humans, and no safe level of exposure can be recommended. 

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Kiobel vs Shell discovery doc battle continues in US Courts

Ms. Kiobel has been trying for years to obtain justice for the murder of her husband and other abuses committed against her. That justice was denied to her in the United States, not on the merits, but due to an unforeseen limitation on the reach of the Alien Tort Statute that no lower court had previously imposed.

By John Donovan

The headline above is not strictly correct.

The current battle in the US courts IS between Esther Kiobel and Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP. However, the real battle is between Esther Kiobel and Shell – a long term client of Cravath.

Cravath holds over 100,000 Shell internal documents assembled by Shell for litigation brought by Esther Kiobel many years ago in the US courts. The following extract from a submission made by her lawyers on 23 February 2017 explains what happened:

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Financial tremors for Shell/Exxon (NAM) triggered by Dutch earthquakes

From a regular contributor

NAM has been found responsible for immaterial damage to the inhabitants of Groningen in court 2 days ago. NAM is appealing. Individuals can now claim damages to their health, due to stress caused by the earthquakes. I don’t know the exact English translation of this jargon but you get the point, NAM not only has to pay for the physical damage but also for spoiling the lives of people. 

Be prepared for many years of legal battles. The damages are very low compared to the USA but there are many people who can claim. Potential costs can be very high. Obviously, it is the shysters who will get the bulk of the money! And all the time there is pressure to reduce output from the Groningen field.

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Shell, the oil giant run by unscrupulous hypocrites 

Congratulations to The Guardian on their story exposing the hypocrisy of Royal Dutch Shell in relation to climate change. 

‘Shell knew’: oil giant’s 1991 film warned of climate change danger

Shell subsequently invested billions in highly polluting exploration and production activities around the world. The Guardian provides examples. 

The gap between Shell propaganda and what it actually does is even more striking bearing in mind the core principles of Shell’s claimed ethical code of honesty, integrity, transparency etc.

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Climate of fear at Shell Nyhamna Gas Plant in Norway

Runar Kjørsvik, the former Main Safety Delegate elected by colleagues at the huge Nyhamna Gas Plant operated by Shell was recently honoured with the 2017 Zola Award at the Norwegian Nobel Institute Exhibition Hall for defending the interests of Shell employees. 

By John Donovan

SHELL MANAGEMENT PERSECUTION OF UNION SAFETY DELEGATE RUNAR KJORSVIK

This is the first in a series of articles about the astonishing story of Shell senior management’s evil persecution of Runar Kjørsvik, the Norwegian elected by his fellow workers as the Main Safety Delegate of the SAFE union at the huge Nyhamna Gas Plant operated by Royal Dutch Shell. He (and his family) ended up being the subjects of a surveillance operation. Shell has the photographs to prove it. Runar was ultimately dismissed.

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Oil Resumption in Ogoni: Does Our Society Still Have Any Conscience?

By Fegalo Nsuke

When in 1993, the Ogoni people embarked on the journey to redefine their future with a historic march involving over 300,000 people, little did they know that they were not only on a self-rescue mission but were to shape the life and future of the entire Niger Delta. The Ogoni struggle became an eye-opener to the nefarious and very repugnant ecological war of the multinational oil companies in the Niger Delta.

Government response was simply to sentence 9 outspoken Ogoni leaders to death by hanging. It would have been expected that the hanging of Ken Saro-Wiwa and eight others on November 10, 1995 was to end the Ogoni agitation, at least it was sufficient to put fear into everyone who dared to question the operations of the multi-national oil companies, and was expected to guarantee the resumption of oil production in Ogoni and cover up the massive human rights abuses perpetrated by the Nigerian authorities and Shell. against the Ogoni people. The Nigerian authorities had imagined that no one would further organize the Ogoni resistance after Saro-Wiwa.

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Shell’s Role in Irish Police Corruption Scandal

By John Donovan

In April 2013, I informed Alan Shatter, the then Irish Minister for Justice & Equality about widespread corrupt practices involving the Irish police. I received an emailed acknowledgement of the warnings from his then Private Secretary Damien Brennan.

Shortly thereafter Shatter was forced to resign after a state-commissioned report found that both the government and police had failed to properly address allegations of Irish police corruption.

Shell was a corporate sponsor of corruption in Ireland aided and abetted by its then”Mr Fixit” company OSSL, who to this day, freely admit their involvement in distributing bribes on behalf of Shell to smooth the path of the controversial Corrib Gas Project.

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