Foreign Oil Reports: Royal Dutch Shell plc (ADR) (RDS.A) & Arctic Air Pollution, TOTAL S.A. (ADR) (TOT)’s Win, Petroleo Brasileiro Petrobras SA (ADR) (PBR)’s Rumor

Editor’s Note: Royal Dutch Shell plc (ADR) (NYSE:RDS.A), TOTAL S.A. (ADR) (NYSE:TOT), Petroleo Brasileiro Petrobras SA (ADR) (NYSE:PBR)

Shell to Pay U.S. $1.1 Million for Arctic Air Pollution (Bloomberg)
Royal Dutch Shell plc (ADR) (NYSE:RDS.A) agreed to pay $1.1 million for violating permits regulating air pollution from its oil-exploration fleet in the Arctic Ocean last year. The settlement announced by the Environmental Protection Agency said that vessels scouting for oil in Alaska’s Beaufort and Chukchi seas for two months in 2012 didn’t use all mandated pollution-control or monitoring equipment. The EPA had set the requirements as a condition for issuing a permit for Shell’s Arctic exploration. “Based on EPA’s inspections and Shell’s excess emission reports, EPA documented numerous air permit violations for Shell’s Discoverer and Kulluk drill ship fleets,” the agency’s Seattle office said in a statement late yesterday.


Total Scores Another Pre-Salt ‘Win’ in Gabon (
France’s TOTAL S.A. (ADR) (NYSE:TOT) has made a pre-salt gas discovery in the deep-waters off Gabon, following on pre-salt oil finds earlier this year, which could galvanize investment in the country’s pre-salt potential, but only if we see more oil and less gas. In mid-August, TOTAL S.A. (ADR) (NYSE:TOT) announced an accumulation of gas condensate in a pre-salt layer of the ocean bed, some100 kilometers off the coast of Gabon. The Diaman-1B successfully confirms the existence of a working petroleum system and is the first discovery drilled in the deep-water portion of the pre-salt play. The Diaman-1B well was drilled to a total depth of 18,323 feet in approximately 5,673 feet of water.

Shell Malaysia Launches Learning Hub in Miri to Develop Local Capabilities (Rigzone)
Royal Dutch Shell plc (ADR) (NYSE:RDS.A)’s subsidiary Shell Malaysia plans to offer innovative training program at its Asia Pacific Wells learning hub (integrated gas) in Miri, Sarawak as it seeks to develop local capabilities in the oil and gas industry to deal with major issues such as oil spills, Malaysia’s Business Times reported Friday. “As we go into more remote and harsher environments to fulfil the world’s energy needs, we need to ensure our wells staff are competent to deal with the challenges so we can achieve safety and business performance aspirations,” Shell Malaysia Chairman Iain Lo said after the launch of the Wells learning hub Thursday, an event officiated by Sarawak Deputy Chief Minister Alfred Jabu Numpang.

Brazil Stocks Close At 3-Month High, Petrobras Surges On Rumor (Wall Street Journal)
Brazilian stocks closed Thursday at their highest level since early June, lifted by a rise in overseas equities and a recovery in the local currency that aided some local shares. Also, a rumor about possibly higher domestic fuel prices powered state-controlled energy giant Petroleo Brasileiro Petrobras SA (ADR) (NYSE:PBR)’s stock skyward. Brazil’s benchmark Ibovespa index of most-traded issues rose 635.70 points, or 1.2%, to 52351.86, its best close since June 6. Volume was strong at 9.05 billion Brazilian reais ($3.9 billion). With Thursday’s gain, the Ibovespa has risen nearly 19% since its July 5 trough of 44107 points, a four-year low. Underpinning the local market’s performance was a 4.1% rise in shares of Petroleo Brasileiro Petrobras SA (ADR) (NYSE:PBR), one of the Ibovespa’s biggest components, to BRL17.54.

Shell negotiating with Nigerians over oil spill compensation (MarketWatch)
Royal Dutch Shell plc (ADR) (NYSE:RDS.A) will start compensation talks Monday with lawyers representing thousands of Nigerian villagers affected by two major oil spills in the Niger river delta. About 15,000 residents of Bodo, located in Nigeria’s southern Rivers State, are seeking millions of dollars in compensation over the 2008 spills, caused by pipeline ruptures. Shell has admitted liability for the spills but disputes the amount of oil spilled and the extent of the damages.