North Dakota’s oil boom from space

March 9, 2012By Lorne StockmanBlog Post, Featured

It has been mentioned often that the mining of tar sands in Alberta, Canada can be seen from space. Recent composite images from the Air Force’s Meteorological Satellite, brought to our attention by the great work at, show another new form of North American oil production and its extensive reach and impact. The red area in the image is … Read More

The Flaring Scandal that Shames the US

September 28, 2011By Andy RowellBlog Post, Featured 1 Comment

Twenty years ago, Ken Saro-Wiwa, who was then largely unknown in the west either as an environmental activist or writer, started touring the capitals of Europe to drum up support for the Ogoni campaign against the oil giant Shell. Saro-Wiwa and the Ogoni had many issues with Shell – the fact that they had received … Read More

From One Gulf to Another

July 2, 2010By Andy RowellBlog Post 2 Comments

Five years ago, I co-authored a book called “The Next Gulf- London, Washington and Oil Conflict in Nigeria”, that  – as the title suggested – looked at the interlinked nature of oil politics from America, the UK and West Africa. In part the book details the grievances of the people of the Niger Delta – … Read More

Financial Times Pulls Anti-Shell Advert

May 19, 2010By Andy RowellBlog Post

Years ago, when the environmental organisation Greenpeace was running a campaign against Ford in the UK, the liberal Guardian newspaper refused to run one of Greenpeace’s anti-Ford adverts. At the time, Ford was one of the largest advertisers in the Guardian and it threatened to pull all its adverts if the Guardian ran the Greenpeace … Read More

Flaws in Ugandan Oil Boom Exposed

February 17, 2010By Andy RowellBlog Post

The London-based environmental group Platform was the first group to analyse the oil contracts in Iraq called Production Sharing Agreements (PSAs), which gave lucrative terms to the international oil companies. Now they have turned their attention to the rapidly expanding oil scene in Central Africa in Uganda. Uganda is said to be sitting on the … Read More

Yet More Criticism of Shell’s Nigerian Operations

February 16, 2010By Andy RowellBlog Post 3 Comments

Yesterday it was internal criticism of Shell’s Nigerian operations. Today it is external criticism. A new report by the Ecumenical Council for Corporate Responsibility (ECCR) argues that Shell can improve its negative social and environmental impacts in the Niger Delta. Based on case studies researched and written by five civil society organisations working in the … Read More

Shell to Fight Chinese in Nigeria

October 30, 2009By Andy RowellBlog Post

Shell is facing the humiliation of having to reduce its workforce by 5000 as part of a radical cost-cutting drive due to the falling oil price. As the oil giant’s profits had plummeted an amazing 73 per cent, Peter Voser, the chief executive, said “the outlook remains very uncertain, and we are not expecting a … Read More

The First of Peter’s Problems: Nigeria

June 25, 2009By Andy RowellBlog Post 1 Comment

When Peter Voser takes control at Shell next week from his predecessor Jeroen van der Veer, he will have a bursting in-tray that includes one persistent problem for Shell: Nigeria. Here the oil giant faces a myriad of problems including continuing community unrest, militant attacks and what to do about gas flaring.