Shell Oil Company
Overview
 
Shell Oil Company is the United States-based subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell
Royal Dutch Shell
Royal Dutch Shell plc , commonly known as Shell, is a global oil and gas company headquartered in The Hague, Netherlands and with its registered office in London, United Kingdom. It is the fifth-largest company in the world according to a composite measure by Forbes magazine and one of the six...

, a multinational
Multinational corporation
A multi national corporation or enterprise , is a corporation or an enterprise that manages production or delivers services in more than one country. It can also be referred to as an international corporation...

 oil company ("oil major") of Anglo
Anglo
Anglo is a prefix indicating a relation to the Angles, England or the English people, as in the terms Anglo-Saxon, Anglo-American, Anglo-Celtic, Anglo-African and Anglo-Indian. It is often used alone, somewhat loosely, to refer to people of British Isles descent in The Americas, Australia and...

 Dutch
Netherlands
The Netherlands is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, located mainly in North-West Europe and with several islands in the Caribbean. Mainland Netherlands borders the North Sea to the north and west, Belgium to the south, and Germany to the east, and shares maritime borders...

 origins, which is amongst the largest oil companies in the world. Approximately 22,000 Shell employees are based in the U.S. The head office in the U.S. is in Houston, Texas
Houston, Texas
Houston is the fourth-largest city in the United States, and the largest city in the state of Texas. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, the city had a population of 2.1 million people within an area of . Houston is the seat of Harris County and the economic center of , which is the ...

. Shell Oil Company, including its consolidated companies and its share in equity companies, is one of America’s largest oil and natural gas producers, natural gas marketers, gasoline marketers and petrochemical manufacturers.

Shell is the market leader through approximately 25,000 Shell-branded gas stations in the US which also serve as Shell's most visible public presence.
Encyclopedia
Shell Oil Company is the United States-based subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell
Royal Dutch Shell
Royal Dutch Shell plc , commonly known as Shell, is a global oil and gas company headquartered in The Hague, Netherlands and with its registered office in London, United Kingdom. It is the fifth-largest company in the world according to a composite measure by Forbes magazine and one of the six...

, a multinational
Multinational corporation
A multi national corporation or enterprise , is a corporation or an enterprise that manages production or delivers services in more than one country. It can also be referred to as an international corporation...

 oil company ("oil major") of Anglo
Anglo
Anglo is a prefix indicating a relation to the Angles, England or the English people, as in the terms Anglo-Saxon, Anglo-American, Anglo-Celtic, Anglo-African and Anglo-Indian. It is often used alone, somewhat loosely, to refer to people of British Isles descent in The Americas, Australia and...

 Dutch
Netherlands
The Netherlands is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, located mainly in North-West Europe and with several islands in the Caribbean. Mainland Netherlands borders the North Sea to the north and west, Belgium to the south, and Germany to the east, and shares maritime borders...

 origins, which is amongst the largest oil companies in the world. Approximately 22,000 Shell employees are based in the U.S. The head office in the U.S. is in Houston, Texas
Houston, Texas
Houston is the fourth-largest city in the United States, and the largest city in the state of Texas. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, the city had a population of 2.1 million people within an area of . Houston is the seat of Harris County and the economic center of , which is the ...

. Shell Oil Company, including its consolidated companies and its share in equity companies, is one of America’s largest oil and natural gas producers, natural gas marketers, gasoline marketers and petrochemical manufacturers.

Shell is the market leader through approximately 25,000 Shell-branded gas stations in the US which also serve as Shell's most visible public presence. Shell Oil Company is a 50/50 partner with the Saudi Arabian government-owned oil company Saudi Aramco
Saudi Aramco
Saudi Aramco , officially the Saudi Arabian Oil Company, is the national oil company of Saudi Arabia.Saudi Aramco is the world's largest and most valuable privately-held company, with estimates of its value in 2011 to be $7 trillion USD.Saudi Aramco has both the largest proven crude oil reserves,...

 in Motiva Enterprises
Motiva Enterprises
Motiva Enterprises, LLC, is a 50–50 joint venture between Shell Oil Company and Saudi Refining...

, a refining and marketing joint venture which owns and operates three oil refineries on the Gulf Coast of the United States
Gulf Coast of the United States
The Gulf Coast of the United States, sometimes referred to as the Gulf South, South Coast, or 3rd Coast, comprises the coasts of American states that are on the Gulf of Mexico, which includes Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida and are known as the Gulf States...

. It also holds 80% of an exploration firm called Pecten
Pecten
Pecten is Latin for "honeycomb." Its genitive form is pectinis, which yields the root pectin-.Pecten may refer to:*Pecten , any honeycomb structure in animals...

 that explores and drills in various offshore locations including the oil basin near Douala
Douala
Douala is the largest city in Cameroon and the capital of Cameroon's Littoral Province. Home to Cameroon's largest port and its major international airport, Douala International Airport, it is the commercial capital of the country...

, Cameroon in cooperation with the French government-owned Elf Aquitaine
Elf Aquitaine
Elf Aquitaine was a French oil company which merged with TotalFina to form TotalFinaElf. The new company changed its name to Total in 2003...

 (now Total).

Shell products include oils, fuels, and card services as well as exploration, production, and refining of petroleum products. The Shell Oil Refinery in Martinez, California, the first Shell refinery in the United States, supplies Shell and Texaco
Texaco
Texaco is the name of an American oil retail brand. Its flagship product is its fuel "Texaco with Techron". It also owns the Havoline motor oil brand....

 stations in the West and Midwest.

Shell gasolines used to include the RU2000 and SU2000 lines (later there was a SU2000E) but they have been superseded by the V-Power line.

In 1997 Shell and Texaco entered into two refining/marketing joint ventures. One combined their midwestern and western operations and was known as Equilon. The other, known as Motiva, combined the eastern and gulf coast operations of Shell Oil and Star Enterprise, itself a joint venture between Saudi Aramco and Texaco.
After Texaco merged with Chevron
Chevron Corporation
Chevron Corporation is an American multinational energy corporation headquartered in San Ramon, California, United States and active in more than 180 countries. It is engaged in every aspect of the oil, gas, and geothermal energy industries, including exploration and production; refining,...

 in 2001, Shell purchased Texaco's shares in the joint ventures. In 2002, Shell began converting these Texaco stations to the Shell brand, a process that was to be completed by June 2004, "the largest retail re-branding initiative in American business history."

Relationship with Royal Dutch Shell

Until the mid 1980s Shell’s business in the United States was substantially independent, with its stock (“Shell Oil”) being traded on the NYSE and with little direct involvement from the Group’s central office in The Hague
The Hague
The Hague is the capital city of the province of South Holland in the Netherlands. With a population of 500,000 inhabitants , it is the third largest city of the Netherlands, after Amsterdam and Rotterdam...

, in the running of the American business. In 1984, Shell made a bid to purchase those shares of Shell Oil Company it did not own (around 30%) and despite some opposition from some minority shareholders which led to a court case, Shell succeeded in the buy-out for a sum of $5.7 billion.

Despite the acquisition, however, Shell Oil remained a very independent business. This was partly for complex legal reasons as RoyalDutch/Shell feared that there could be onerous liability
Legal liability
Legal liability is the legal bound obligation to pay debts.* In law a person is said to be legally liable when they are financially and legally responsible for something. Legal liability concerns both civil law and criminal law. See Strict liability. Under English law, with the passing of the Theft...

 problems if a closer control of Shell Oil's affairs was taken by the "parent companies". One of the stranger consequences of this independence was that the Shell logo used in the US was slightly different from that used in the rest of the world. In the 1990s Shell Oil's independence began gradually to be eroded as the "parent companies" took a more hands-on approach in the running of the business. The logo used in the United States is the same as that used elsewhere since June 1, 1998.

Subsidiaries

  • Aera Energy LLC
    Aera Energy LLC
    Aera Energy LLC is a natural gas, oil exploration and production company jointly owned by Shell and ExxonMobil headquartered in Bakersfield, California...

     is a joint venture with Mobil
    Mobil
    Mobil, previously known as the Socony-Vacuum Oil Company, was a major American oil company which merged with Exxon in 1999 to form ExxonMobil. Today Mobil continues as a major brand name within the combined company, as well as still being a gas station sometimes paired with their own store or On...

     Oil operating in California.
  • Shell Development Emeryville
    Shell Development Emeryville
    The Emeryville Research Center of Shell Development Company in Emeryville, California was the major research facility of Shell Oil Company in the United States from 1928 to 1966...

     was a research facility that operated from 1928–1966 in California
  • Motiva Enterprises
    Motiva Enterprises
    Motiva Enterprises, LLC, is a 50–50 joint venture between Shell Oil Company and Saudi Refining...

     is a joint venture with Shell and Saudi Refining
    Saudi Refining
    Saudi Refining, Inc., with headquarters in Houston, purchases and sells crude oil and maintains a significant inventory of crude oil outside the United States. SRI has an interest in a limited liability company known as Motiva Enterprises, LLC. Motiva refines and markets petroleum products in the...

    .

Environmental

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
United States Environmental Protection Agency
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is an agency of the federal government of the United States charged with protecting human health and the environment, by writing and enforcing regulations based on laws passed by Congress...

 (EPA) issued a Notice of Violation to Shell Oil Company for its infringements of the Clean Air Act
Clean Air Act
A Clean Air Act is one of a number of pieces of legislation relating to the reduction of airborne contaminants, smog and air pollution in general. The use by governments to enforce clean air standards has contributed to an improvement in human health and longer life spans...

 at a bulk petroleum terminal the company owned in Bridgeport, Conn., until October 1, 1998. According to the report, Shell loaded a total of 28.4 million gallons of gasoline onto barges without required vapor recovery equipment on seven days in 1997 resulting in 56 tons of uncontrolled volatile organic compound
Volatile organic compound
Volatile organic compounds are organic chemicals that have a high vapor pressure at ordinary, room-temperature conditions. Their high vapor pressure results from a low boiling point, which causes large numbers of molecules to evaporate or sublimate from the liquid or solid form of the compound and...

 emissions. During the investigation, the EPA found that Shell built an additional loading bay without permit of the state Department of Environmental Protection
Department of Environmental Protection
Department of Environmental Protection is a name used by several states in the United States of America for the agency charged with proposing and enforcing environmental law...

 in 1995. Bridgeport’s facility had been recorded to produce average of about 170 tons of volatile organic compounds per year. However, this modification has the potential of production 30 tons per year more of the pollution emissions.

Shell Puget Sound Refinery, Anacortes, Washington
Anacortes, Washington
Anacortes is a city in Skagit County, Washington, United States. The name "Anacortes" is a consolidation of the name Anna Curtis, who was the wife of early Fidalgo Island settler Amos Bowman. Anacortes' population was 15,778 at the time of the 2010 census...

, was fined $291,000 from 2006 to 2010 for violations of the Clean Air Act making it the second most-fined violator in the Pacific Northwest
Pacific Northwest
The Pacific Northwest is a region in northwestern North America, bounded by the Pacific Ocean to the west and, loosely, by the Rocky Mountains on the east. Definitions of the region vary and there is no commonly agreed upon boundary, even among Pacific Northwesterners. A common concept of the...

. , it was listed as "high priority violator" since 2008.
In 2008, a lawsuit was filed against Shell Oil Company for alleged Clean Air Act violation. Shell Deer Park
Deer Park, Texas
Deer Park is a city in the U.S. state of Texas within the Houston–Sugar Land–Baytown metropolitan area. The city is located in Harris County and is situated in Southeast Texas. As of the 2010 U.S. Census, the population of Deer Park was 32,010....

 facility, 20 miles east of Houston, was the nation’s eighth-largest oil refinery and one of the world’s largest petrochemical producers. The facility was also the second largest source of air pollution in Harris County
Harris County, Texas
As of the 2010 Census, the population of the county was 4,092,459, White Americans made up 56.6% of Harris County's population; non-Hispanic whites represented 33.0% of the population. Black Americans made up 18.9% of the population. Native Americans made up 0.7% of Harris County's population...

, which ranked among the lowest in the nation in several measures of air quality. According to Sierra Club and Environment Texas, analysis of Shell’s reports to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, air pollutants released at Deer Park since 2003 exceeded the EPA's emissions limits.

Shell has recently implemented efforts to reduce the impact of its operations on the millions of migratory birds that encounter the North Sea drilling operations.

Zone-pricing

Mehdi Shahbazi
Mehdi Shahbazi
Mehdi Shahbazi was a self-made American business man who emigrated to United States in the 60s from his native Iran. Over the years, Mr...

 was a Shell station operator in central California who posted signs in 2005 stating "Big oil's unearned profit" in protest of zone pricing
Geographical pricing
Geographical pricing, in marketing, is the practice of modifying a basic list price based on the geographical location of the buyer. It is intended to reflect the costs of shipping to different locations.There are several types of geographic pricing:...

. Shell sued Shahbazi saying that the protest violated the terms of his lease. Shahbazi responded by accusing the company of "breach of contract and of violating the Petroleum Marketing Practices Act". Shell then terminated his contract. A federal judge ruled in favor of Shell and Shahbazi was ordered to vacate the station.

Shahbazi died on November 14, 2007, due to liver failure which was a result of a hunger strike.

Polybutylene lawsuit

From 1978 to 1995, Shell Oil produced pipes made out of polybutylene
Polybutylene
Polybutylene is a polyolefin or saturated polymer with the chemical formula n. It should not be confused with polybutene, a low molecular weight oligomer with a different repeat unit....

, which corrodes when exposed to chlorine. A class action lawsuit was filed in 1995 against Shell Oil when the polybutylene pipes caused flooding in many households. This lawsuit required Shell Oil to pay for the re-installation of piping for millions of houses until its expiration in May 2009.

Nigerian settlement

Author Ken Saro-Wiwa
Ken Saro-Wiwa
Kenule "Ken" Beeson Saro Wiwa was a Nigerian author, television producer, environmental activist, and winner of the Right Livelihood Award and the Goldman Environmental Prize...

 was a member of the Ogoni people
Ogoni people
Ogoni people are one of the many indigenous peoples in the region of southeast Nigeria. They share common oil related environmental problem with the Ijaw people of Niger Delta, but Ogonis are not listed in the list of people historically belonging to Niger Delta...

, an ethnic Nigerian minority whose hometown, Ogoniland, in the Niger Delta
Niger Delta
The Niger Delta, the delta of the Niger River in Nigeria, is a densely populated region sometimes called the Oil Rivers because it was once a major producer of palm oil...

 has been targeted for crude oil extraction since the 1950s and which has suffered extreme and unremediated environmental damage from decades of indiscriminate oil waste dumping. Saro-Wiwa, initially as spokesperson, and then as President, of the Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People
Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People
The Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People is a campaigning organization representing the Ogoni people. Ogoniland is situated north-east of Niger Delta...

 (MOSOP), led a nonviolent
Nonviolence
Nonviolence has two meanings. It can refer, first, to a general philosophy of abstention from violence because of moral or religious principle It can refer to the behaviour of people using nonviolent action Nonviolence has two (closely related) meanings. (1) It can refer, first, to a general...

 campaign against environmental degradation of the land and natural waters of Ogoniland by the operations of multinational oil companies, especially Shell
Royal Dutch Shell
Royal Dutch Shell plc , commonly known as Shell, is a global oil and gas company headquartered in The Hague, Netherlands and with its registered office in London, United Kingdom. It is the fifth-largest company in the world according to a composite measure by Forbes magazine and one of the six...

.

At the peak of his non-violent campaign, Saro-Wiwa and the other members of the Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People were arrested, hastily tried by a special military tribunal
Military tribunal
A military tribunal is a kind of military court designed to try members of enemy forces during wartime, operating outside the scope of conventional criminal and civil proceedings. The judges are military officers and fulfill the role of jurors...

, and hanged in 1995 by the Nigerian military
Military of Nigeria
The Nigerian Armed Forces are the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The military has active duty personnel in three armed services, totaling approximately 85,000 troops and 82,000 paramilitary personnel. Its origins lie in the elements of the Royal West African Frontier Force that...

 government of General Sani Abacha, all on charges widely viewed as entirely politically motivated and completely unfounded. Their executions provoked international outrage and resulted in Nigeria's suspension from the Commonwealth of Nations
Commonwealth of Nations
The Commonwealth of Nations, normally referred to as the Commonwealth and formerly known as the British Commonwealth, is an intergovernmental organisation of fifty-four independent member states...

.

Shell has been brought on trial in New York with the accusation of having collaborated with the military executions, and in June 2009, it has settled out of court for US$15 million to bring the case to an end. Ben Amunwa, director of the Remember Saro-Wiwa organization, said that "No company, that is innocent of any involvement with the Nigeria military and human rights abuses, would settle out of court for 15.5 million dollars. It clearly shows that they have something to hide".

See also

  • Petroleum geology
    Petroleum geology
    Petroleum geology refers to the specific set of geological disciplines that are applied to the search for hydrocarbons .-Sedimentary basin analysis:...

  • Fred Meissner
    Fred Meissner
    Fred F. Meissner was an American geologist and engineer who contributed to the fields of Geology, Geophysics, Engineering, Petroleum Engineering, Geochemistry, Mineralogy, Physics, Mining, Economic Geology, and Fishing.-Biography:Meissner was an honored exploration geologist, college professor at...

    , Shell Laboratories, Petroleum Explorationist, Professor Colorado School of Mines
  • M. King Hubbert
    M. King Hubbert
    Marion King Hubbert was a geoscientist who worked at the Shell research lab in Houston, Texas. He made several important contributions to geology, geophysics, and petroleum geology, most notably the Hubbert curve and Hubbert peak theory , with important political ramifications. He was often...

    , Shell Laboratories, Petroleum Geologist, created the Hubbert peak theory
    Hubbert peak theory
    The Hubbert peak theory posits that for any given geographical area, from an individual oil-producing region to the planet as a whole, the rate of petroleum production tends to follow a bell-shaped curve...

     model of oil depletion
    Oil depletion
    Oil depletion occurs in the second half of the production curve of an oil well, oil field, or the average of total world oil production. The Hubbert peak theory makes predictions of production rates based on prior discovery rates and anticipated production rates. Hubbert curves predict that the...

  • Motiva Enterprises
    Motiva Enterprises
    Motiva Enterprises, LLC, is a 50–50 joint venture between Shell Oil Company and Saudi Refining...


External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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