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Shell’s Bold New Plan: Running Away to the Land of Fossil Fuel Fanatics

No shit, Sherlock. Moving your headquarters across the Atlantic isn’t exactly like booking a vacation.

Posted by John Donovan: 20 June 2024

In the latest episode of “What the Actual F**k?”, Shell, that lovable giant known for its charming pollution and undying greed, is considering jumping ship to the good ol’ U.S. of A. Yes, you heard it right! Rigzone conducted some riveting interviews with analysts to get the scoop on this potential exodus. Spoiler alert: it’s all about money and less about saving the planet.

According to Patrick Rutty, the Director of Global Intelligence at Enverus, “It is a widely shared perception these days that there’s no better place to be a listed oil and gas company than America, owing largely to its relatively fossil fuel-friendly investors.” Well, duh. If you’re a company that thrives on drilling holes in the earth and spewing carbon, the U.S. is practically Disney World.

Rutty also spilt the beans that back in 2021, Royal Dutch Shell “shucked its first and middle names” and moved its tax residence from the Netherlands to the UK after a Dutch court called their carbon emissions plans lame. Apparently, London is now a “problematic” home too because of Brexit. Who would’ve guessed?

The analyst Frederick J. Lawrence added a touch of realism, stating, “for a variety of reasons, the relocation option would likely be no panacea and would involve many complications.” Oh, really? No shit, Sherlock. Moving your headquarters across the Atlantic isn’t exactly like booking a vacation.

Meanwhile, Alex Stevens from the Institute for Energy Research noted, “With Europe’s focus on promoting renewable energy and the growth of heavy regulations across Europe, these companies see the American market as potentially more welcoming.” Ah yes, America, where the grass is greener and the regulations are barely existent.

Ellen R. Wald from Transversal Consulting summed it up by saying, “The main issue seems to be that European investors are not willing to pay as much for oil companies as American investors are and the companies are feeling pressure.” Translation: Europe is tired of your shit, Shell.

When asked for comments, Shell’s spokesperson said, “the CEO has answered this question many, many times – it’s all out there on the public record.” Classic dodge. TotalEnergies was equally diplomatic, insisting, “There is no ‘France issue’ at TotalEnergies… There’s no question of leaving France.” Sure, we believe you.

So, will Shell and its cronies make the leap to America, the land of the fossil-fuel-free? Only time, and perhaps another court ruling, will tell. In the meantime, keep your popcorn ready, folks. This shitshow is just getting started.


Rigzone interviews with analysts on potential relocations by European oil majors.

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