JoNova

A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


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Big Oil, Big-Gas lobby against coal. Shell leans on World Bank to nobble the competition

Well, well, well. When Big-Oil fund skeptics, they’re evil polluters. When Big-Oil pay green lobbyists, they’re just being good citizens (see the ads, right?). Naturally Royal Dutch Shell are concerned about the environment, families, rare marsupials and what not. They wouldn’t just be green for the profit would they… oh, wait. Shell is one of the six gas “super majors” and all gas providers profit when coal is unfashionable. In terms of resources, Shell is now more of a gas company than an oil company.

Big-Gas loves wind turbines. Wind farms are fickle and coal power can’t ramp up and down quickly to fill in the gaps, but the more expensive gas can. No wonder Shell are lobbying actively against coal, and for wind.

Thanks in part to Shell’s campaign, the poor family in the Shell Ad are going to have to pay more to stay warm this winter. Meanwhile the marsupials will manage without Shell lobbyists like they have for the last 100 million years, and the environment won’t notice any effect from a carbon tax.

As with all cut-throat business deals, Shell (and others) are doing what they are supposed to do: make money. There is nothing […]

Even Big-Oil is begging for Big-Green subsidies

Royal Dutch Shell is concerned we won’t sequester away enough of that pollutant, carbon dioxide.

Carbon capture and storage [CCS], a way of cutting emissions from industry by burying them underground, needs more state support for the European Union to meet clean-energy goals, a Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA) adviser said.

“We’ve got to be clear that the EU’s climate goals in the long run cannot be met without clear policy intervention and that CCS is vital for the delivery of that,” Graeme Sweeney, who advises Shell on carbon-dioxide strategy, said by telephone. — Bloomberg

If Royal Dutch Shell had so much as suggested that the warming threat might be exaggerated, a team of activists from Greenpeace, WWF and the IPCC would issue press releases overnight declaring “Vested Interests Promote Doubt and Denial”. Other lobbyists like, say, The Royal Society, would write a letter to Shell blasting it for “disinformation“.

But when Shell asks for more government handouts to fund its ventures in Carbon Capture and Storage, the vested interest is obvious, but the apoplexy and conspiracist accusations are nowhere to be seen. Shell, of course, sells oil, but it also sells CCS. And things haven’t been going well for […]