The Unsuitablog

Exposing Ethical Hypocrites Everywhere!

Shell: Difficult Oil. Hard Sell.

Posted by keith on December 15th, 2008

Shell Oil At any Cost

Wow! Now here’s a challenge: you are the head of a huge oil company in a world of rising temperatures, falling profits and peak oil, and somehow you have to keep three entirely different and contrary balls in the air at the same time:

1) Your company exists to make profit; if you don’t make a profit then your shareholders will go elsewhere, your company will fail and you will be out of a job, as well as a great deal of once valuable share options – you have to be profitable;

2) The lifeblood of your industry – oil – is running out, not just a bit, but really running out, as demand increases, reserves peter out and new industrial powerful nations try to buy what is left from your rivals – you have to find oil;

3) The climate is changing and you are partly responsible, in fact you and your cohorts in the oil industry are most definitely responsible for a sizeable chunk of both the heating of the Earth and its avoidable destruction; your reputation is getting dirtier by the hour – you need to look green

Tough, isn’t it? The temptation is to say, “Oh, forget it, it’s only money, we can do things another way!” But you won’t because there is no such thing as only money: money is everything, it is what makes you what you are, it defines your place in civilization and no crap about the environment or peak oil is going to stop that!

The great thing is, there is some oil left, but it’s damn hard to get to, and horrifically dirty – easily as dirty as coal. It’s called Oil Sands, or Tar Sands (far more accurate). Uh-oh! We seem to have made a bit of a mess with our initial foray into this venture – we need a nice little euphemism to change the public’s perception…

Difficult Oil.

That sounds nicer – it’s amost as though the public need to help us with our problem; like we need some sympathy with our plight – gosh, this “Difficult Oil” is really important, can we rely on your support to get it out of the ground?

A nice video, that’s the ticket:

Click to open in new window…

[Scene: Shell Man and Journalist driving through Indonesian (?) paddy field in 4 wheel drive]

Shell Man: “You know, a century ago this whole area was just a swamp. In those days it would have taken oil workers weeks just to do this journey.”

Journalist: “Nothing stands in the way of progress, right?”

SM: (threateningly) “Just like facts don’t stand in the way of a good story.”

SM: “We all know easily accessible oil is a thing of the past. The challenge now is to get those reserves we know about and yet haven’t been able to reach. Reserves that would otherwise just go to waste.”

(cut to shot of snake fleeing path of vehicle)

(The video then goes through a convoluted story of Shell Man and his estranged son (a nice domestic touch) leading to the discovery of bendy pipes to drill oil.)


And we all love Shell for making sure we have oil for another generation. What a pity they don’t mention the millions of people and the countless species that will be killed in their insatiable thirst for oil and money; the irreversible global climatic change that will result from their profit greed; the twisted mess of a planet that we will end up with if Shell are allowed to carry on lying to us.

Don’t believe the bullshit: Shell are only doing it for the money!

One Response to “Shell: Difficult Oil. Hard Sell.”

  1. Clifford J. Wirth, Ph.D. Says:

    Independent studies (reviewed in the Peak Oil Report by Clifford J. Wirth) conclude that Peak Oil production will occur (or has occurred) between 2005 to 2010 (projected year for peak in parentheses), as follows:

    * Association for the Study of Peak Oil (2007)
    * Rembrandt Koppelaar, Editor of “Oil Watch Monthly” (2008 to 2010)
    * Tony Eriksen, Oil stock analyst (2008)
    * Matthew Simmons, Energy investment banker, (2007)
    * T. Boone Pickens, Oil and gas investor (2007)
    * U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (2005)
    * Kenneth S. Deffeyes, Princeton professor and retired shell Geologist (2005)
    * Sam Sam Bakhtiari, Retired Iranian National Oil Company geologist (2005)
    * Chris Skrebowski, Editor of “Petroleum Review” (2010)
    * Sadad Al Husseini, former head of production and exploration, Saudi Aramco (2008)
    * Energy Watch Group in Germany (2006

    Independent studies conclude that global crude oil production will now decline from 74 million barrels per day to 60 million barrels per day by 2015. During the same time, demand will increase. Oil supplies will be even tighter for the U.S. As oil producing nations consume more and more oil domestically they will export less and less. Because demand is high in China, India, the Middle East, and other oil producing nations, once global oil production begins to decline, demand will always be higher than supply. And since the U.S. represents one fourth of global oil demand, whatever oil we conserve will be consumed elsewhere. Thus, conservation in the U.S. will not slow oil depletion rates significantly.

    Alternatives will not even begin to fill the gap. And most alternatives yield electric power, but we need liquid fuels for tractors/combines, 18 wheel trucks, trains, ships, and mining equipment. The independent scientists of the Energy Watch Group conclude in a 2007 report titled: “Peak Oil Could Trigger Meltdown of Society:”

    “By 2020, and even more by 2030, global oil supply will be dramatically lower. This will create a supply gap which can hardly be closed by growing contributions from other fossil, nuclear or alternative energy sources in this time frame.”

    With increasing costs for gasoline and diesel, along with declining taxes and declining gasoline tax revenues, states and local governments will eventually have to cut staff and curtail highway maintenance. Eventually, gasoline stations will close, and state and local highway workers won’t be able to get to work. We are facing the collapse of the highways that depend on diesel and gasoline powered trucks for bridge maintenance, culvert cleaning to avoid road washouts, snow plowing, and roadbed and surface repair. When the highways fail, so will the power grid, as highways carry the parts, large transformers, steel for pylons, and high tension cables from great distances. With the highways out, there will be no food coming from far away, and without the power grid virtually nothing modern works, including home heating, pumping of gasoline and diesel, airports, communications, and automated building systems.

    This is documented in a free 48 page report that can be downloaded, website posted, distributed, and emailed:

    I used to live in NH-USA, but moved to a sustainable place. Anyone interested in relocating to a nice, pretty, sustainable area with a good climate and good soil? Email: clifford dot wirth at yahoo dot com or give me a phone call which operates here as my old USA-NH number 603-668-4207.

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