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OPL 245 was a tipping point

Comment by Bill Campbell (retired HSE Group Auditor of Shell International) on the article “Corruption charge looms for outgoing BHP director Malcolm Brinded” 

It was good news for those who care for Shell and it’s reputation when Brinded and his guard dog Ruddock were shown the door in 2012. Brinded had contaminated the boardrooms of Shell UK and RDS for 15 years with his toxic behaviour. Corruption of external parties also in the shape of the North Sea safety reguluator using his special relationship with the then Secretary of State for Scotland. Still wary of the demise of reputation during the reserves debacle it seems the Chairman and his counsel with the support of the non executives called time on Brinded sensing Shell was heading yet again into the scandal zone. read more

John Donovan, Group Chairman, Royal Dutch Shell PLC companies

Extracts from the ebook “John Donovan, Shell’s Nightmare” (now available on Amazon websites globally)

From pages 11 and 12.

Extract begins

My Shell insider sources have received threats, including alleged death threats, as reported by The Irish Times in April 2011: Gardaí investigate alleged death threats to Corrib whistleblowers

The last message I received from one Sakhalin2 source advised that they had received a credible serious threat. I never heard from that particular insider again.

A press release issued by Shell UK in March 1995 provides some idea of the degree of acrimony and the wide scope of our campaigning activities. read more


By John Donovan

Today we publish the opening pages of Shell’s internal consultative document which, although directed at Shell’s Dutch employees, includes a detailed description of Shell’s proposed global organisation changes.

With regards to the Shell VP musical chairs analogy, a Shell Blog contributor has pointed out “50% of VPs would have to leave, and GM level even more.”

The content of the Shell document is all valuable, commercially sensitive insider information, most definitely not meant for consumption by the public, Shell shareholders, or Shell’s competitors.  read more

Irish Supreme Court orders that Peter Sweetman must pay Shell’s costs in challenge to Corrib planning


Here (Sweetman v Shell), the Supreme Court held that Part 2 of the Environmental (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2011 (Costs of Certain Proceedings to be Borne by Each Party in Certain Circumstances) (link) does not act retrospectively. Charleton J stated: This is because the award of costs is not essentially procedural. An expectation as to the recovery of costs affects both the decision to commence a case and the necessary and legitimate prediction that it would be funded if successfully prosecuted or successfully defended by the party required to answer a legal action. Laffoy J and Dunne J concurred.  read more

Links to over 265 articles by a host of different publishers including the FT, Wall Street Journal, Reuters etc., all containing references to or its founders

screen-shot-2016-09-19-at-15-34-38Links to over 265 articles by a host of publishers including the FT, Wall Street Journal, Reuters, Dow Jones Newswires, Bloomberg, New York Times etc., containing references to this website, or its founders Alfred and John Donovan (photo right).

Includes newspaper and magazine articles, and newsletters. All in date order.

WALL STREET JOURNAL ARTICLE: “Shell Wages Legal Fight Over Web Domain Name”: 2 June 2005

BLOOMBERG ARTICLE: “Shell in Legal Battle Over Name of Web Site, Journal Reports“: 2 June 2005 read more

Which Members of the Royal Dutch Shell Executive Committee Approved the OPL 245 Scam?

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Outsider: Contrary to what today’s newspaper reports might suggest, Shell wasn’t “dragged” into the long-running OPL 245 scandal – Shell was involved in orchestrating it from the very start.

Since expenditure at this level must have required the approval of the EC it will be interesting to see whether Shell will let us know which members of the EC were responsible for approving the scam.

HERE FIRST TEN DAYS AGO: Lorraine Mitchelmore Fired

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Michael Crothers at Shell E&P Ireland Limited

By John Donovan

On 7 November, we published the first news of the firing of Lorraine Mitchelmore, the President and Country Chair of Shell Canada.

The information, which came from a Shell insider source, was posted on our Shell Blog under the alias of “Manny”

The departure of Lorraine Mitchelmore has been confirmed today by the mainstream media, 10 days later.

She claims that she was not sacked, but stepped down to spend more time with her children.  read more

Why you can’t be sure of SHELL: Udated

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Dear John,

Thank you very much for publishing my letter on your site.

Shell scam against its employees in the Philippines?

Please also see my blog on “shell tabangao refinery life” posted 27 April 2015:



This rigged ranking exercise was an expression of personal wrath of Shell against my person. This personal ire led Shell to embarrass me in front of my co-employees, friends and family when Shell rank me with poorest work performer through the action of Shell supervisors who made the rating.  Shell knew that being an employee like me with high regard for my honor, dignity and integrity would excessively be pained by linking to my person, a rating as poorest work performer.  They did not just say that I am a poor work performer, they even vainly announced it to my extreme distress and embarrassment. The company made the rating written and be known publicly as a reasonable proof to show cause why I should be terminated from employment. These acts Shell gave me so much pain and suffering  even  up to these times.  Shell did not just took me out employment but even deprived me good chances of being employed again due to the blight Shell cast upon my person. read more


You and your late father seem to have started out trying to hold Shell accountable for its actions. I hope you agree that accountability goes both ways, and it is fair that you should be held accountable for your own actions as well. The energy that fuels your website seems to be a deep resentment, or even hatred.

By John Donovan

I have published below a letter received today from Ireland. It relates to OSSL allegations against Shell.

Although the source is anonymous, the letter writer seems intelligent and genuine.

Otherwise I would not publish it or respond to what is said.

The first version is exactly as received.

In the second version, for ease of reference, I have inserted my comments in red text.


Sept 4, 2014

Dear Mr Donovan

You and your late father seem to have started out trying to hold Shell accountable for its actions. I hope you agree that accountability goes both ways, and it is fair that you should be held accountable for your own actions as well. read more



Screen Shot 2014-02-20 at 10.44.48POSTING ON SHELL BLOG BY “RAYMOND” ON TUESDAY 18 FEB 2014

Well we moved into the new buildings in Houston. What an utter disappointment. If this is the new face of Shell (small cubes, no privacy and poor working conditions ) then I can see Shell having problems attracting top people. How many top students want to work in a 6×6 cube while the head of HR lives in his glass palace? Nice one Bruce


Poor Raymond, we have been sitting in open office for more than two years. A JG B is also sitting next to us. All in the pretext of cost saving!


@Raymond: my commiserations! I escaped the open offices until my retirement. Each time rooms needed to be shared from a certain jobgroup level I made a promotion and had a room to myself. I remember that in 1977 or thereabouts Don Schaefer was the great mover and shaker behind the introduction of open offices. Everyone was against and revolts were imminent, so he lined up a fact finding team of 7 senior people (all jg 1-2 department heads) plus the junior project engineer (jg5) who had to execute the plan, to visit several open offices in Germany. Except for the project engineer they all travelled first class as was the rule on business travel for jg3+. They came back and had to say it was good, provided you built the offices first class. Otherwise it would be a disaster. (They all lied, but arms were twisted…). read more

BP a novice at manipulating Wikipedia compared with Shell

Screen Shot 2013-04-16 at 23.58.28In Shell’s case, a vast amount of information, which fully met Wikipedia guidelines, but was deemed damaging to Shell’s reputation, has been either covertly removed, or removed in dubious circumstances by editors hiding their identity behind an alias, as they are allowed to do. Royal Dutch Shell articles on Wikipedia are, in my experience, regularly patrolled and edited by individuals sympathetic to Shell. Most of the articles have been deleted in their entirety.

By John Donovan

According to a recent news report, BP’s press office has been accused of a behind the scenes operation allegedly rewriting an estimated 44 percent of the oil giant’s Wikipedia page: BP accused of rewriting environmental record on Wikipedia


BP is not directly editing its page, but instead has apparently inserted a BP representative into the editing community who provides Wikipedia editors with text.

The text is then copied “as is” onto the page by Wikipedia editors. Readers might assume its unbiased information when its, in fact, vetted by higher-ups at BP before hitting the page. read more

Shell’s Arctic Farce: helicopter de-icing controversy

Phi helicopter from the article: Phi Helicopter Crash Kills 8



I wonder if “Outsider” can supply his source (newspaper article / date) of the rumour about Shell flying helicopters without de-icing equipment? Of course with all this hot air about the Arctic warming up etc. maybe the temperatures at the time of the helicopters flying were above that when de-icing equipment was legally required? OR, maybe this is just another piece of rumour-mongering by an individual who has a problem with Shell? Still, “Relieved” seems to believe in the tabloid rubbish. Talking of tabloids – I see that 40% of the articles published on this site are from 7 or 8 years ago!! read more

MOTIVA REFINERY DEBACLE: Caustic – the same thing that blew up Norco. Unbelievable

Might as well melt it all down and start over…



Re: Motiva Refinery Debacle – Unbelievable. Lock-out, Tag-out, the most basic safety rule, strikes again.

The same thing that blew-up Piper Alpha. Caustic – the same thing that blew up Norco. Unbelievable.

And Caustic doesn’t just pit stainless, it causes cracks in stress areas. They will have to use advanced ultrasound techniques on every millimeter of hundreds of miles of piping because a hidden crack will propagate and cause a failure days or years in the future.

Might as well melt it all down and start over. read more

Shell propaganda guys?



I see you now have two mindless friends, ‘USCitizen’ and ‘LondonLad’ staunchly defending Royal Dutch Shell. Hmmm. It would appear to me that the propaganda guys on both sides of the pond appear to have gotten into the act. I seriously doubt these people really exist. I wonder if they coordinate their responses ?

I remember a line from a movie, ‘A Few Good Men’, I believe, that went something like : ‘You want the truth?! You really want the truth?!!…… Well, you can’t handle the truth.!!’ In the movie the truth turned out to be rather ‘dirty and ugly’. read more

John Donovan, Shell’s nightmare

Picture Caption: John Donovan in 2009. On his website, this former adman has posted more than 25,000 items on oil giant Shell.

Thanks to a network of “moles” inside the company, this early retiree from Britain is posting on his website reports on shortcomings inside the world’s largest oil group. It’s a dogged pursuit that has already cost the Anglo-Dutch giant several billions.

Christoph Giesen

The enemy is on his way. Waking early, he drives to London, leaves the car around the corner in a parking garage, and heads to York Road and the entrance of the Shell Centre, the headquarters of the most powerful oil company in the world. The Centre is a huge gray concrete block right by the River Thames. When the oil executives look out their windows, they see the British Parliament and the London Eye, Europe’s largest Ferris wheel. And now and then, peering down at the entrance, they can see John Donovan, the early retiree from Colchester in East Anglia. The man who is costing Shell billions. read more

A brush with Brinded

Malcolm Brinded

“I confirm that in my experience Shell UK operates oppressively against small business people.  Its staff has acted unscrupulously and possibly illegally. The tactics of Shell UK management is completely opposite to the honesty and integrity promised by Shell in its code of ethics.”

By John Donovan

At the 1999 Shell AGM in London, Malcolm Brinded (above) rather surprisingly walked over and introduced himself to me. We had corresponded, but never met. At the time he had just taken over as Country Chairman of Shell UK.

I managed to corner him into setting up an informal meeting at the AGM between Shell executives, including Brinded and Group Chairman Mark Moody-Stuart, with a group of thoroughly disgruntled Shell UK service station retailers, to whom I had supplied shareholder passes to gain entry. read more

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