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U.S. oil majors fall behind on climate, European lead

Major European oil companies are making major efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to fight climate change. American majors are dragging their behinds.

Royal Dutch Shell pledged Tuesday to slash carbon emission by 50 percent and boost investment in clean, renewable energy. CEO Ben van Beurden promised to spend at least $2 billion on on wind power, biofuels and electric cars, about the same amount it will spend on shale oil.

“It is making sure that the products within society have an overall lower carbon footprint,” Beurden told investors, according to the Guardian newspaper. “That is the long-term way of making sure our business remains a relevant business in the face of the energy transition.” read more

Feds approve first oil exploration in Arctic federal waters since Shell

It’s the first oil exploration in Arctic federal waters since Shell abandoned its campaign in 2015.

The company, Eni, aims to begin drilling in December. It will operate from an existing man-made gravel island called Spy Island. Spy Island is about three miles offshore, in state waters west of Prudhoe Bay.

The prospect is about four miles away from the island, so Eni plans to use extended-reach drilling. According to the company, it will be be the longest extended-reach well in Alaska. read more

Activist warns of cracker plant consequences

Mark Dixon discussed the hazards of having an ethane cracker plant close to Pittsburgh during a talk in the William Pitt Union Assembly Room Wednesday evening. (Photo by Issi Glatts | Staff Photographer)

Remy Samuels: Staff Writer: November 16, 2017

When Mark Dixon found out Shell Oil Company planned to build a petrochemical plant in nearby Beaver County, he immediately thought of the pollution and environmental devastation that would soon take place there. “It really pissed me off,” Dixon said. FULL ARTICLE read more

Shell says can pump oil from Brazil’s pre-salt fields below $40/bbl

Simon WebbAlexandra Alper: OCTOBER 25, 2017

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell will participate in Brazil’s deepwater oilfield auction on Friday and is confident it can pump oil from the fields on offer for less than $40 a barrel, a top Shell executive said. Brazil will hold its first auction in four years for its pre-salt oilfields on Friday. The eight deepwater blocks on offer hold billions of barrels in reserves, and for the first time, Brazil will allow foreign oil firms to operate the fields in the region. Shell believes it could pump oil from the pre-salt fields below the company’s target breakeven cost of $40 per barrel, Wael Sawan, Executive Vice President for Shell’s deepwater division, told Reuters. The high quality of the reserves and the prolific output volume that the pre-salt wells can produce make them an attractive proposition, he said. FULL ARTICLE read more

General Motors, Disney, Shell and 1,200 other companies are taking steps to fight climate change, report says

September 12 at 12:01 AM

More than 1,200 global businesses, including U.S. companies such as Disney, Shell and General Motors, are moving to embrace a carbon price — even if President Trump isn’t, according to a new report by a Washington climate think tank. While the president has suggested that tackling climate change will undermine the economy and hamstring  businesses, chief executives have been busy voluntarily putting a price on their own carbon dioxide emissions. Pricing carbon, or assigning a dollar value per ton of carbon dioxide emissions, creates a financial incentive for companies to reduce emissions. The report published on Tuesday by the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions is the first major study of corporate carbon pricing since Trump’s election. FULL ARTICLE read more

Trump Rolls Back Anti-Corruption Efforts in the Oil Industry

By : 11 August 2017

The rule, which was mandated by a law co-sponsored by former Republican Senator Richard Lugar, of Indiana, and Democratic Senator Ben Cardin, of Maryland, was designed to combat bribery and corruption, especially in poor countries governed by kleptocrats. Thirty other countries, including Canada and the members of the European Union, had already adopted similar requirements. Yet the American Petroleum Institute and companies such as ExxonMobil, at the time when Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was still its C.E.O., had lobbied against the rule. They said that it was costly to implement and gave unfair advantage to overseas competitors to which it did not apply. When Trump took power, the lobbyists got their way. read more

More Shell News 13 July 2017

How Europe’s Monster Gas Field Turned Into a Monster Headache: Bloomberg: 13 July 2017

Judge to consider demands to close Europe’s largest gas field; Groningen has contributed almost 300 billion euros to budget; What was once a blessing is now an expensive curse; Officials are also considering criminal charges against NAM executives READ MORE

Corrib gas timeline: 20 years of protests and controversy: The Irish Times: 13 July 2017

June 2005 – High Court jails five men who became known as the “Rossport Five” for contempt of court over their continued protests over the pipeline route. READ MORE

Trump administration approves Eni plan to drill offshore Alaska: Reuters: 13 July 2017

Royal Dutch Shell Plc quit its exploration quest offshore Alaska in 2015 after a ship it had leased suffered a gash in mostly uncharted waters… READ MORE read more

More Shell News 29 June 2017

Shell acquires local power company MP2: Houston Chronicle: 29 June 2017

Royal Dutch Shell said Thursday that it plans to acquire MP2 Energy, a power and retail electric company based in the Woodlands, as the oil major seeks to diversify its business.

Trump says the Atlantic, Arctic could soon be open to oil drilling: The Washington Post: 29 June 2017

The White House is making a bid to overturn the Obama administration’s five-year plan forbidding oil and gas exploration in the Arctic and Atlantic oceans and will examine opportunities to drill almost anywhere off the U.S. coast. read more

Shell News Updated Saturday 3rd June 2017

Shell fears ‘backlash’ from Paris deal exit: The Times: Saturday 3 June 2017

The Anglo-Dutch company has been one of the most outspoken oil industry supporters of the 2015 accord, telling Mr Trump that withdrawal would weaken America’s position globally.

Shell still working to reduce emissions despite U.S. pullout from Paris agreement: The Times: Saturday 3 June 2017

President Donald Trump pulled the United States out of the Paris climate agreement Thursday, but one of the largest companies in the world said it will still do its part to provide clean energy.

Big payout for Shell and ExxonMobil from NAM holding: DutchNews.nl: 2 June 2017

NAM has €3.4bn earmarked for provisions on its balance sheet. A small portion of this, 15% or €495m, is reserved for claims made against the company for earthquake damage. read more

Neal Katyal, the best justice money can buy

By John Donovan

Shell lawyers Cravath Swaine & Moore LLP have hired Neal Katyal, a senior partner at the global law firm Hogan Lovells, to represent them in litigation relating to Shell’s human rights abuses in Nigeria.

Mr Katyal is a busy man. On Monday he will be arguing a case before the U.S. Supreme Court. For the first time, it includes President Trump’s appointee Neil Gorsuch. Katyal endorsed Gorsuch’s nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court, testifying at his Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing. read more

Brexit, Trump, Populism and Royal Dutch Shell Plc

By John Donovan (right)

Brexit and Trump are the most visible current manifestations of populism – examples of ground-breaking nationalist movements backed by a large proportion of a voting population.

Populism is on the rise in a number of EU countries including Germany, France and the Netherlands, where there is mounting concern over PVV leader Geert Wilders.

What is described as “encroaching populism and negativism” is apparently viewed as a serious threat by Dutch multinationals, including Shell, Philips and Unilever. read more

Hakluyt & Company Spying Missions For Shell


By John Donovan

Commercial intelligence agencies are currently attracting an unwanted spotlight as a result of the dodgy dossier on President-Elect Donald Trump compiled by a former MI6 officer, Christopher Steele. In March 2009, Steele jointly founded a private investigations company, Orbis Business Intelligence.

The Financial Times has just published a related article focussed on a rival London-based private spy firm, Hakluyt & Company, also founded by former MI6 officers. Must be more money in commercial work. Hakluyt is closely associated with Shell. read more

Opec bends the markets

screen-shot-2016-12-03-at-08-16-41By Ed Crooks, December 2, 2016

In 451 CE, the great Roman general Flavius Aetius rallied a motley army of imperial troops and barbarian allies, and halted the advance of Attila’s Huns at the Catalaunian Plains in Gaul, buying the empire some time and temporarily interrupting its long-term decline. This week’s Opec meeting in Vienna had something of the same feel about it.

Opec’s power peaked in the 1970s, and the US shale oil revolution of the past half-decade has threatened to consign the cartel’s influence to history. But by agreeing a deal to cut production on Wednesday, the Opec ministers showed that if they all acted together they could still bend the oil markets to their will, at least for a while. read more

Obama administration bans Arctic offshore oil drilling through 2022. But will Trump reverse it?

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By William Yardley: 18 Nov 2016

The Obama administration said Friday it was banning offshore oil drilling in the Arctic through 2022, a move that prompted widespread praise from conservation groups but raised questions over how long the decision will stand just two months before President-elect Donald Trump takes office.

A new five-year leasing program prohibits any drilling in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas — an environmental battleground in recent years —and also blocks expansion in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, while allowing some new leasing in the Gulf of Mexico. read more

Not dead yet

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By Ed Crooks: November 19, 2016

The last rites have been read over the Age of Oil a few times recently, but this week the International Energy Agency suggested there was still plenty of life left in it yet.

In its 2016 World Energy Outlook, the IEA argued that even if the Paris climate agreement were fully implemented, demand for oil would keep rising until at least 2040.

The message was reassuring for oil producers worried that “peak demand” might condemn them to stagnation or decline, or even put them out of business. There was colder comfort, however, in a warning from Wood Mackenzie that big oil companies risked being left behind in the transition to low-carbon energy. read more

Trump’s victory could hurt Royal Dutch Shell plc’s future

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By The Motley Fool  Nov 14, 2016

Donald Trump’s views on climate change may provide a boost to oil production in the US. He stated in his campaign that the US was being disadvantaged by rules and regulations aimed to prevent (or at least slow down) climate change. This could signal a more positive attitude from the US government towards oil and gas companies over the medium term.

Although there’s no certainty that Trump will follow through on his campaign policies when he becomes President, it seems likely that he’ll be less positive about battling the effects of climate change than Barack Obama. This could be bad news for Shell(LSE: RDSB). read more

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