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United Kingdom: a lone fighter against Shell

ARD TV in Germany – the German equivalent of BBC TV – on Saturday, 21 April, broadcast a feature about me and this website ( as part of the EUROPA MAGAZINE programme.

By John Donovan

ARD TV in Germany – the German equivalent of BBC TV – on Saturday, 21 April, broadcast a feature about me and this website ( as part of the EUROPA MAGAZINE programme.


Click here to read a translation of the narration.

During the film, *Oleg Mitvol, the Russian Environmental Minister in 2006, confirmed what he has said before on the subject  of Sakhalin II i.e. that he got the evidence from me (Donovan) that cost Shell its majority stake in the project (and many billions of dollars).

“Yes, Mr. Donovan’s documents really helped us,” Russia’s former deputy environmental minister confirms. “His evidence proved without a doubt that documents had been forged and that problems had deliberately been kept secret.”

President Putin and retired Royal Dutch Shell Executive, Paddy Briggs, also appear in the film.

Mr Briggs said:

When you have that amount of power you need to be held accountable. My view is that the democratic system doesn’t always hold multinationals like Shell to account as much as they should. So there’s a gap… And into that gap people like John Donovan will come.

I understand that for some unknown reason, Shell management declined to make any comment about me or this website. They seem to be peeved about something?

*Oleg Mitvol is currently the leader of the Green Alliance Party in Russia said to be the country’s first real green party.

Non-professional translation of  related ARD webpage.


Broadcast of 21 April 2012, 16.30

United Kingdom: a lone fighter against Shell

Until 20 years ago, John Donovan was a business partner of the Shell Group.

The Briton ran an Advertising business with his father designing promotions for Shell customers.

The small company ceased trading after a trial alleging that a Shell employee stole ideas and Donovan then became one of the biggest critics of the Anglo-Dutch group.

For over 10 years the early retiree from Colchester has operated a website that reports on abuses and exposes contradictions between corporate pledges and corporate actions. He has published tens of thousands of articles  there, partly with the help of senior Shell insiders.

And his campaign against the multinational, especially violations against the environment, have had significant consequences.

For example, Shell had operating losses of several billion euros after he notified the Russian government about the lax safety precautions in the Sakhalin-2 consortium involving Shell and Gazprom. Shell lost its majority stake after intervention by a Russian court.

External Links:

Homepage of John Donovan




Kremlin attack dog vows to take on Shell in the battle … – The Guardian

4 Oct 2006 – On one side was Oleg Mitvol, 6ft 2in and dressed in a black coat, the Kremlin’s attack dog leading the charge against the vast Sakhalin-2 oil …

Gorbachev Plans to Revive Social-Democratic Party: 21 March 2012

Extract: The former head of Russia’s environmental regulator Rosprirodnadzor, Oleg Mitvol, known for high-profile campaigns against oil companies, announced on Wednesday his plans to establish a new party, tentatively dubbed “Alliance of Green – people party.


John Donovan of Royal Dutch Shell Plc .com and its sister non-profit websites,,,,,, and are owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia feature.

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