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Alaska Wilderness League

In 2009, Shell allegedly colluded with the Nigerian government to silence environmental and human rights activists in Nigeria’s Ogoni region, including its alleged direct involvement in the death of six activists.

Royal Dutch Shell has spent billions of dollars building the image of an oil company that cares. What this report, Shell Oil: A record of environmental and corporate malfeasance, shows is that Shell cares—about its bottom line. What Shell doesn’t care about are the local communities it devastates, the workers it imperils or the environments it destroys.

From shocking human rights abuses in Nigeria to a long history of egregious environmental violations in the United Kingdom and around the world, Shell’s track record suggests that it will stop at nothing to feed its outrageous profits. As Shell pushes to recklessly drill in America’s Arctic Ocean—with no viable plan to clean up an oil spill in one of the world’s most extreme, remote environments—this report makes it clear that the Obama administration must not trust Shell with our one and only Arctic.

Read the Alaska Wilderness League’s new report on Royal Dutch Shell by clicking here.

An Executive Summary of the report follows:

Shell Oil Company cannot be trusted to safely drill in the Arctic Ocean, an extreme yet delicate and irreplaceable American treasure. Behind the company’s slick public relations campaign is a disturbing history that cannot be ignored as they rush to drill in one of the country’s last wild frontiers.

An examination of Shell’s operations around the world makes it clear that the company operates with a brazen disregard for the safety of its own workers, the needs of local communities both here in the United States and internationally, and the long-term impact of drilling on the environment. Instead of taking responsibility for its actions, Shell simply pays fines and settles lawsuits. It seems that Shell considers lawsuits and clean-up costs just part of doing business, consequences to be paid while avoiding substantive changes to its operations that might interfere with the company’s efforts to maximize its already immense profits.

See the photos below:

The company’s North Sea operations have one of the worst safety records of any oil company operating in the UK, violating safety rules 25 times from 2005 to 2011 and resulting in at least £1 million ($1.5 million) in fines and legal costs. Just last year, Shell caused the worst spill there in a decade.
Shell called it’s operation to mine tar sands in Canada a “sustainable energy source,” but the Canadian Advertising Authority says these claims misled the public.
In 2000, Shell settled a class action lawsuit brought by members of communities on the East Side of Cleveland. The communities alleged that Shell charged more for gas in predominantly black areas than on the city’s West Side.
In 2010, an accident at Shell’s Draugen well in Norway damaged safety equipment, leaving only one barrier remaining to prevent a potentially disastrous oil spill. Shell claimed the incident was not “serious,” but the Norwegian Petroleum Safety Authority disagreed, calling it “major accident situation,” and citing a series of safety concerns.
In 1998, a blast at a Shell refinery in Washington State killed six workers. From 2004-2011, Shell continued to violate the state’s safety laws, racking up $150,000 in fines and penalties for exposing employees to explosions and toxic release hazards, and for a lack of proper safety equipment and training.