Shell profits, Africans die

This video from Ireland is called Shell in Mayo: A New Nigeria?

BP is certainly not the only Big Oil corporation where profits come first, the environment and human lives a very poor second …

From British daily The Morning Star:

Shell profits grow ‘at the expense of lives’

Wednesday 28 April 2010

by Paddy McGuffin

Amnesty International has condemned Anglo-Dutch oil giant Shell for profiteering at the expense of indigenous peoples as the firm announced bumper profits.

The criticism by the human rights organisation came after Shell announced a 49 per cent surge in first-quarter profits as a result of higher oil prices.

The firm reported earnings of $4.9 billion (£3.2bn) for the first three months of the year.

The company cut 5,000 jobs last year and will slash another 1,000 by the end of the year – mainly in downstream and corporate functions to make it “more competitive.”

Shell chief executive Peter Voser said: “The priorities are for a more competitive performance, for growth and for sharper delivery of strategy. There is more to come from Shell.”

But campaigners pointed to the firm’s rapacious role in the Niger Delta as evidence of the human and environmental cost of its profit-swelling activities.

Last year Shell settled out of court in the US following a case brought by members of the Ogoni tribe over its alleged complicity in the state murder of Ken Saro-Wiwa and other activists.

Further controversy surrounds the firm’s practice of “gas flaring” in the delta region. Gas flares are open-air fires that burn the natural gas that is released when oil is extracted from the ground. The practice endangers human health, harms local ecosystems, emits huge amounts of greenhouse gases and squanders vast quantities of natural gas.

An Amnesty International UK spokesperson said: “Shell‘s massive profits come at a significant cost. The company’s failure to prevent pollution and gas flaring and to clean up oil spills have had a devastating effect on people’s basic rights in the Niger Delta.

Shells‘s shareholders may be doing very nicely, but the livelihoods of people in the Niger Delta are still being destroyed by the company’s failure to act responsibly and clean up its own mess.”

Anyone wishing to get involved in the campaign should visit

Talking about oil and the environment: Britain: Hundreds of protesters across the country have demanded that the taxpayer-backed Royal Bank of Scotland stop using public money to extract tar sands: here.

8 thoughts on “Shell profits, Africans die

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