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Shell Prelude FLNG project relegated to backburner

By John Donovan

A Reuters article published today reports that a collapse in the benchmark price of gas has hit Shell’s “long-delayed $12.6 billion Prelude project off northwest Australia”.  Citing Shell Prelude, it says that FLNG projects are being relegated to the backburner.

Shell executive VP Steve Hill is quoted as admitting: “There was maybe an expectation when Prelude was being conceived that this was the future and every LNG project would look like that. I think that got kind of superseded by the U.S. being the primary source of new LNG supply ..”

Based on information leaked to us by a well-placed whistleblower, we first issued warnings about the ill-fated project in 2013.

Increasing costs and delays were not the only concerns.


I have bad news for Shell. A whistleblower who has major safety concerns with the Prelude flagship vessel destined for Australia, has supplied me with potentially explosive information. I am in possession of a considerable amount of internal information and photographic material. The person in question has been intimately involved in the project at a high level and is deeply concerned that warnings issued to Shell (and other parties) have been ignored and financial considerations are taking priority over safety issues. The whistleblower is very concerned about mismanagement and the alleged use of totally unqualified personnel.

One of our regular contributors commented at the time:

Shell’s Prelude LNG ‘ship’ is not really a ship, per se, because it has no means of self propulsion. It will be towed to location and anchored, supposedly for the life of the gas field exploitation project. This vessel is nothing more than a giant production and processing barge masquerading as a ship.”

Below are just some of the articles we published subsequently which correctly predicted that Prelude would become a white elephant project.

ARTICLE: Royal Dutch Shell Prelude to disaster?: 10 Jan 2014

ARTICLE: Shell Prelude FLNG: loss of containment of hydrocarbons almost inevitable: 21 Feb 2014

ARTICLE: What should frighten stiff Royal Dutch Shell shareholders: 15 March 2014

Astonishingly, no one seems to have informed the Shell propaganda boys that the project is in dire trouble.

Today, they have issued a press release boasting of “a virtual interactive golf range simulated along the entire length of Shell’s Prelude Floating Liquefied Natural Gas (FLNG) project.”

An interactive golf course. That will solve all the problems.

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One Comment

  1. Bill Campbell says:

    Putting a 12.6 billion investment on the back burner puts the losses in Alaska (4.6 billion) into the not so bad after all category.


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