Blog Archives

Midwest News clip about hole in Sruwaddacon estuary caused by Shell

Shell once again causing problems in Co.Mayo


Midwest Radio

The news clip was broadcast on Midwest radio on Tuesday 21st May 2013 about a hole in Sruwaddacon estuary caused by Shell tunnellin

Midwest News clip about hole in Sruwaddacon estuary caused by Shell | Shell to Sea.

Exploiting ‘Irish oil’ at what cost?

Exporting oil has made Norway one of the wealthiest countries in the world.

But in the Germanic way, they have retained ownership of the natural resource and invested their wealth in building a sustainable economy and society.

Arguably, wind is Ireland’s oil. Our geographic location means we have highly lucrative consistent wind that will keep turbines turning and generating a consistent energy supply.

But what price will we have to pay to exploit this resource and what guarantees are there that we can make the most of the resource like the Norwegians.

The early signs are ominous and recent history tells us that Governments here tend to sell the family silver below cost and at a heavy price to communities.

Offaly and the other midland counties have, the experts tell us, the capacity to generate power. But at what cost?

While the county could benefit from wind power, littering Laois with hundreds of giant turbines is already angering communities. Farmers, we are told, will benefit, but are they being bought off cheaply.

Cash-strapped County Councils must act in the best interest of the community but also help to develop a resource. It is a difficult balancing act. It must also avoid the attraction of backing turbines to raise finance.

Exporting the energy generated to Britain is likely to irk some but it is the economics of this plan that we should be concerned about. Are we selling off our power on the cheap so that another country grows economically?

Should we not be harnessing wind energy to develop our own economy? Surely Irish business would flourish if it could avail of cheaper home-grown electricity.

The story of the Corrib Gas fields off Mayo does not reflect well on Government policy. There was no policy then so the gas was sold off quickly and cheaply. Hopefully wind energy is not a repeat performance.

via Exploiting ‘Irish oil’ at what cost? | Shell to Sea.

via Exploiting ‘Irish oil’ at what cost? | Shell to Sea.

Conference: Ireland’s Natural Resources – NOT FOR SALE

Irelandʼs Natural Resources

NOT FOR SALE Conference Sun 10 March, 11.30 – 6pm, Gresham Hotel, Dublin

Hosted By Richard Boyd Barrett TD, People Before Profit

Leinster House, Kildare St, Dublin 2. Tel: 01 6183366

Speakers Include: Dr Helge Ryggvik (Norwegian Economic Historian), Catherine Murphy TD, Jessica Ernst (Canadian Scientist Living Fracked), Frank Connolly (Author of SIPTU produced Optimising Ireland’s Natural Resources), Stein Bredal (Norwegian former Oil Worker), Andrew St Leger (Woodlands League), Cllr Brid Smith (People Before Profit),Padraing Campbell (Former Oil Rig Worker), Paul Murphy MEP (Socialist Party), Maura Harrington (Shell to Sea), Pat “The Chief” O Donnell (Fisherman Porturlin Co Mayo)

View Conference Timetable here: PBP Nat Recources Timetable

Full Leaflet here: PBP Nat Resources Conference


The Irish government is giving away our natural resources. Oil and Gas exploration licences have been handed out to big multi nationals under terms that mean the Irish people do not gain jobs, a revenue stream or security of supply. Practices with serious environmental consequences, such as fracking, are not ruled out under law. The harvesting rights to our forests are about to be sold to the highest bidder. This threatens access rights of the Irish people to walk in our forests and endangers the sustainability of our woodlands as they will be exploited for quick sale of timber. Our water is about to be privatised. The rst move has been to transfer the administration of the water services to a new semi state Irish Water and next year water charges will be introduced. When water was privatised in the north of England, the area experienced its first ever water shortages!

Fishing in Ireland has been destroyed by huge multi-national trawlers, aided and abetted by EU quota regulations, plundering our waters. What we need is a sustainable sheries policy that protects the livelihoods of small shermen and allows local shing industry to ourish creating jobs and protecting a valuable natural resource.

The mismanagement and privatisation of our natural resources has a detrimental impact on the environment, jobs and our economy. Decisions are regularly made with regards to our natural resources without any public consultations, which are required under EU law. There is no serious plan for a programme of major public investment to develop renewable energies.

Ireland is in an unprecedented economic crisis. Our natural resources have enormous potential for jobs and economic growth as would a national project to develop renewable energies.

We must act now to change the policy of facilitating multi nationals in their pursuit of prots which is undermining our economy and the environment.

Come along to our conference on Sun 10 March 11.30 – 18.00 in The Gresham Hotel, O Connell Street, Dublin 1

Booking Tel: 01 618 3366 Email:

via Conference: Ireland’s Natural Resources – NOT FOR SALE | Shell to Sea.

via Conference: Ireland’s Natural Resources – NOT FOR SALE | Shell to Sea.

Belmullet District Court Report – Shell and Mayo County Council stand co-accused of obstructing the public highway. – Indymedia Ireland

in Belmullet district court Shell and Mayo County Council stood co-accused in a case for blocking the road during the disastrous attempt to deliver the Tunnel Boring Machine to Shell’s tunnelling site at Aughoose in August this year. The co-accused settled out of court with the plaintiff and had the case struck out before the details were made public.


It is rumoured however that the case was taken by a fisherman who was suing for obstruction and loss of earnings, and that the plaintiff settled out of court for one thousand Euro. During the TBM debacle in August the main Ballina North coast road was closed while Shell’s jack-knifed lorry carrying the TBM blocked the road for days.

This is dangerous territory for Shell and the County Council as literally thousands of road users were obstructed at the time in the same way. – Watch this space….

Shell to Sea cases

There were four Shell to Sea cases up for mention.

It was the first appearance for a campaigner arrested on Monday morning during an action blocking access to Shell’s tunnelling compound. An order for the Garda book of evidence was made and the case was put back to the 9th of January.

The next case was for obstructing machinery laying a water pipe to the tunnelling compound. This was also put back to the 9th of January.

The third case was for a lock-on action that blocked the TBM for a number of hours in August while in transit to Mayo from Dublin port. In his absence the defendant – who had already plead guilty – was given the probation act and so avoided conviction.

In the last case Shell to Sea spokesperson Maura Harrington was due to set dates for hearings to defend cases arising from the TBM debacle. She wasn’t in court though and a bench warrant was issued for her arrest. Sgt. Butler was visibly disappointed when she arrived in just before the court was finished for the day and the warrant was vacated.

Related Link:

via Belmullet District Court Report – Shell and Mayo County Council stand co-accused of obstructing the public highway. – Indymedia Ireland.

via Belmullet District Court Report – Shell and Mayo County Council stand co-accused of obstructing the public highway. – Indymedia Ireland.

Richard Boyd Barrett raises question of Oil and Gas Wealth with Taoiseach

Richard Boyd Barrett challenged Enda Kenny in the Dáil on the continuing oil and gas giveaway using figures from Shell to Sea’s “Liquid Assets” which is available here

via Richard Boyd Barrett raises question of Oil and Gas Wealth with Taoiseach | Shell to Sea.

via Richard Boyd Barrett raises question of Oil and Gas Wealth with Taoiseach | Shell to Sea.

UN Special Rapporteur “concerned” about Shell to Sea protesters

File photo of UN special rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders, Margaret Sekaggya.

UNITED NATIONS SPECIAL Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders, Margaret Sekaggya, has said she is concerned about the challenges faced by those protesting the Corrib Gas project in Mayo.

Sekaggya was speaking in Dublin today at the end of her five day visit to Ireland.

The special rapporteur met with a delegation of ten people on Wednesday which included seven members of Shell to Sea.

She said she was concerned about “the situation and challenges faced by defenders and activists defending the right to the enjoyment of a safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment, particularly those peacefully protesting against the Corrib Gas project”.

“There is tangible frustration amongst local residents who are standing up for their rights and feel powerless, isolated and have lost trust in public institutions”, she said.

In a statement today Shell to Sea said it raised many issues of concern at the meeting;

…including violence by the Gardaí, behaviour of the private security, the democratic deficit in the planning process, surveillance and harassment, selectivity in the application of the law, the undermining and stigmatisation of campaigners by the judiciary, the politicisation of the judicial process and the ineffectiveness of designated oversight bodies in particular the Garda Ombudsman.

Sekaggya said she received “credible reports indicating the existence of a pattern of criminalization of what has mostly been a peaceful protest movement, including acts of non-compliance and passive resistance”.

Today Shell to Sea spokesperson Terence Conway said communities in Ireland have no protection when they find themselves in the path of experimental oil and gas projects.

“We have been abused and ignored by most institutions of the state and left to defend our rights at huge personal risk,” he said.

“We hope that this report by an independent international expert will make it more difficult for the Irish State to hide it’s domestic record on human rights.”

via UN Special Rapporteur “concerned” about Shell to Sea protesters.

via UN Special Rapporteur “concerned” about Shell to Sea protesters.

Corrib Gas Project Engulfed in Corruption Allegations

Printed below is a self-explanatory email I sent on 11 November 2012 to Mr Michiel Brandjes, Company Secretary & General Counsel Corporate, Royal Dutch Shell Plc.

I sent him further information earlier today including a related email sent to RDS Plc Chief Executive Mr Peter Voser.

I also made reference to the copy of a letter from a solicitor that has been supplied to me.

The solicitor acts for clients in County Mayo concerned by any implication that they have been involved in any corrupt activity allegedly sponsored by Shell.


From: John Donovan <>


Date: 11 November 2012 15:01:19 GMT


Dear Mr Brandjes

I have forwarded to you separately an email I received today, dated 9 November 2012, purportedly sent to Mr Mike Crothers, the Chief Executive of Shell EP Ireland and copied to your colleague Mr Peter Voser, CEO of Royal Dutch Shell Plc and to the Irish Police, the Garda.

The email was sent by OSSL, an Irish supplier to the Corrib Gas Project. The company has previously accused Shell of instructing them to make corrupt payments/gifts to third parties on behalf of Shell.

They claim that to achieve this objective, invoices were falsified on the express instruction of Shell EP Ireland.

OSSL further allege that threats of dire consequences have been made against them by Shell. The company notified you of this by email on 11 October 2012.

The latest allegation is that the local Irish Police involved in the Corrib Gas Project were supplied with alcohol by Shell EP Ireland. It says that there is proof of this in an invoice supplied to Shell.

I can understand why there has been a delay in calling in the police because the local population seems to have little faith in the impartiality of the Garda. Many believe, rightly or wrongly, that the local police are in the pockets of Shell.

This perhaps explains why Shell whistle blowers on the Corrib project – the so called Celtic Tiger Five – did not step forward to give evidence to the Garda after alleging they had received death threats from Shell. As you may recall, we published a considerable number of Shell internal emails leaked to us containing confidential information highly embarrassing to Shell.

If any of the claimed emails are fake, then we will not publish anything further received from OSSL. I do, however ,believe they are genuine.

Please let me know by 4pm Monday 12 November. We will also publish unedited any related comment Shell wishes to make.

No problem if you need more time to investigate and respond.

Just let me know by 4pm that you will be looking into the matter before replying.

Best Regards

John Donovan

Although Mr Brandjes replied to a subsequent email from me on another matter, he has not taken up my invitation as set out above, neither has he taken issue with the authenticity of the relevant emails.

The following is the content of an email sent by OSSL on 11 November 2012 to the solicitor referred to above.


Thank you for your letter

It appears to us that you have misread the situation .

OSSL was instructed by SHELL to pay for goods and services supplied or carried out by third party companies locally in Erris .

We informed your clients and others in the Bellanaboy area the Rossport area and Glengad that in an accounting instruction from Shell we were told to transfer the invoices in a disguised manner to a company called Roadbridge stating that Shell management were getting very worried that they would be seen to be favouring some landowners over others which we have been informed by Shell would contradict all other agreements with landowners who were not in receipt of “special favours “.

Your clients and fifteen others fall into the special favours category ,OSSL simply informed them that SHELL had not reimbursed OSSL in full for the money which it had paid out to third parties on your clients and Shells joint venture.

This money has not been fully reimbursed.

When we entered a long campaign of action to get our money back we were asked by Shell in Holland to travel to London to meet with Frances van Dam of their business and ethics department BID we were also asked to remain silent about the matter.

Some time later we were informed by van Dam that in fact none of what we had disclosed to her was factual , and that no Special Favours or home improvements or cash payments had ever been carried out or supplied to your clients and others stating that “any such works or favours would be corrupt and illegal and would jeopardise the whole project ”

Not even your clients would claim that this never happened , would they?

Apart from the missing money still outstanding we have been informed by Michael Crothers that we were dismissed from the project because of our compliance with your clients requests to Shell for work to be carried out and goods supplied which they subsequently wanted to distance themselves from.

In case you or your clients don’t understand what we are saying be clear that three decent people lost their lively hood over this matter .

Crothers held his head in shame when the facts were laid out to him and he is clear about what went on.


Shell does have a track record of involvement in corruption scandals – see examples at the foot of this article – but that obviously does not mean it is automatically guilty of the allegations on this occasion.

I have no idea why Shell has decided against commenting.


Executive Intelligence Review: Scandal of the Century Rocks British Crown and the City: June 22, 2007

Comment in House of Commons by Vince Camble MP, former Chief Economist of Shell (Debate on the Al-Yamamah BAE Fraud/Corruption controversy and associated money laundering) 7 Feb 2007

(2): Memorandum submitted by WWF to inquiry by House of Commons Select Committee: Quotes Sakhalin II corruption allegations from article: 20 June 2008

Shell in U.S. Gov. Sex, Drugs and Corruption Scandal: 24 January 2009

Shell to pay $48m Nigerian bribe fine: Daily Telegraph 4 November 2010


These companies, including Shell, admitted they “approved of or condoned the payment of bribes on their behalf in Nigeria and falsely recorded the bribe payments made on their behalf as legitimate business expenses in their corporate books, records and accounts”.

SHELL IN BRIBERY FINE: Daily Express 6 November 2010

Posted Date:  13 November 2012


via Corrib Gas Project Engulfed in Corruption Allegations | Shell to Sea.

via Corrib Gas Project Engulfed in Corruption Allegations | Shell to Sea.

Democracy Devalued by Corrib Gas

Now for a serious point, no irony, no satire:- what’s been allowed to happen in Erris for the last ten years regarding the Shell Corrib gas project has significantly devalued the standard of democracy in Ireland. It is a symptom of a wider malaise, for which we’re paying by selling off our independence, our very status as a democratic state – lack of proper participatory democratic process.

We’ve been lead to this point by a gang of unscrupulous dons, none of whom have been made to even acknowledge their crimes.

Crime has become accepted as the norm in Erris, upheld by the agents of state we are brought up to believe protect and support democratic institutions.

There is a painting by Jack B. Yeats in the Hugh Lane gallery called The Maggie Man. The Maggie Man invites fair-goers to pay to throw stones at a wooden roughcut figure called a maggie – gléas magaidh – to encourage it to fend off evil. Those we have allowed to become our leaders have made a maggie of our democracy. They have reduced us to abusing it, diminishing it piecemeal, paying to do so, with blind faith in its automatic powers, while thinking we are engaged in normal democratic activity.

This is what drove me to write Ailliliú Fionnuala. – Donal O’Kelly

via Shell to Sea.

via Shell to Sea.

Lies about Shell safety record on Corrib Gas Project?

Lies about Shell safety record on Corrib Gas Project?

Oct 26th, 2012 by John Donovan.

Hi John,

I saw that you posted up the “Mayo Today” article entitled “Corrib safety clock hits three million hours mark”.

In the article Shell claim:

“The record was reached on October 4 and the workscope covered included all onshore pipeline and terminal activities, plus all offshore work managed out of Erris. This represented an incredible 833 days without a safety incident leading to a staff member or contractor having to take time off work due to injury – stretching back to June 24, 2010.”

This is a lie. I myself witnessed a Shell security guard being carried on a stretcher on a Shell site in January 2012.

I’ve also been contacted by an employee who told of two injuries on site that he knew of;

A female employee had her leg trapped by a steel gate at the Aughoose site in December 2011. This injured employee was off work for 4 or 5 months as a result of the incident.

A security guard injured his knee on the site around January this year.� He returned to work a few days later.

At the time of the first incident the employee said that they were handed jackets to wear with the 2,000,000+ hours worked without injuries even though their colleague was off duty at the time.

There have been a number of other rumored injuries on the Aughoose site in the last few months but nothing confirmed on these yet.

Take care,


Rossport Solidarity Camp.

via Lies about Shell safety record on Corrib Gas Project? | Royal Dutch Shell plc .com.

via Lies about Shell safety record on Corrib Gas Project? | Royal Dutch Shell plc .com.

Irish Grandmother Takes On Oil Giant, Shell- A Very Human Story


In the quiet and tranquil countryside of Mayo, in the far west of Ireland lies one of the most controversial gas projects. Protestors reside in the solidarity camp at Aughoose, one of the two locations which is part of the Corrib Gas Project. The project is based along the Sruwadaccon Estuary which is designated a Special Area of Conservation. The Corrib Gas Field is located about 50 miles off Erris Head in Count Mayo,known as the Slyne Trough. An exploration license was granted to Enterprise Oil in 1993, before Royal Dutch Shell took it over in 2002.

Many locals were concerned over the environmental impacts of the project along with the health and safety aspects. What is surprising is that, despite the amount of information that is available on the Shell to Sea Campaign website, there is little information in the media. Originally in 2004, when the protests first began, the issue received a huge amount of public interest and ample media attention. Now in later years with the situation yet unchanged, it appears that mainstream media is losing interest – it is no longer ‘news’.

Interview with Moira Harrington of Shell to Sea Campaign. Interview by Eimear Clabby, Safeworld Student Writer

“We were considered bog-trotters.”

Maura, a 59 year-old local and retired school teacher, came into public attention when she began protesting against Shell in 2002.

To look at Maura, she is small in height and of slight build, a build both due to her genes, but also to the hunger strike she took part in to capture the attention of Shell and the general public.

I am quite taken aback when I first meet Maura; it’s hard for me to believe that a small, motherly woman of her stature has such power and determination to go against a major force such as Shell.

Maura explained why she is passionate about the campaign:

“On a local level, I feel I should defend this place of beauty and on a national level, I see no economic benefit from the extraction of oil and gas from Ireland.”

After the first planning application for Shell was submitted in 2002, Maura began battling against Shell. This involved five years of research and hard work, and as Maura said herself, “We knew nothing about oil and gas extraction, we lived in a green field area where there was never any heavy industry.” 

Maura also spoke of how both her and her local community were really only pinpointed on the map after the troubles with Shell:

“We were always ignored, politically, and every other way until we were discovered by Shell.”

What was also apparent on Shell’s initial exploit fo Erris, was the lack of respect for the local communities and the assumption that the people of this area were somewhat less intelligent than the “movers and shakers” of Shell,

“We were considered bog-trotters.” said Maura.

Hunger Strike


After enduring 4 years of disputes with protestors, Shell’s plans were still under way and the first pipe laying ship ‘The Solitaire’ arrived at Erris on the 9th September 2008.

Maura felt desperate and began a hunger strike in protest against the arrival of ‘The Solitaire’, the pipe laying ship assisting the Royal Dutch Shells Corrib Gas Project.

Maura vouched to starve herself until such time as The Solitaire exited Irish waters, a process which took ten days outside the gates of Shell at the solidarity camp.

Initial Success

After ten days, the ship moved further out to sea until it was no longer considered within the vicinity of Irish waters.  When this was confirmed, Maura ceased her hunger strike, satisfied that Shell’s efforts had been implicated once more.

“Before beginning the hunger strike I was 6 stone 9 pounds, after the 10 days I weighed in at just 6 stone, over a stone below my healthy weight range.”

For a woman of her size and build, Maura should weigh approximately 7 stone 2, but with the stress of the protest campaign and the hunger strike, Maura is far from her ideal weight.



Aside from protesting and the hunger strike, Maura has landed herself in a bit of trouble over the years.  Maura is no stranger to Mountjoy Prison, or a courtroom for that matter.

Maura was jailed for 14 days for non-payment of fees relating to her protests against Shell’s Corrib Gas Project.  Not only was she arrested, but was arrested outside the funeral of a local neighbour.  Her sentence was furthered by 30 days when, on the day of her arrest, she assaulted a member of the Gardai.

When asked about her experience in Mountjoy prison, Maura replied:

“To be perfectly honest, it wasn’t really that bad. I had a lot of support from other women, and it also helped that my husband marched outside the prison gates everyday for the month I was in there, holding a banner “Free Maura”.

Security Forces

When security at Shell is mentioned, Maura’s facial expression morphs into a look of complete disdain.  Security levels at Shell are at an ultimate high, with highly trained officials in areas such as anti-terrorism – they are not individuals to be messed with:

“I looked into a security man’s eyes one day I saw no remorse; what I saw was an evil individual, capable of anything.”


Maura takes a lot of negative press in her stride and ignores most of the comments directed at her.  In one particular instance, Maura found it hard to forgive and forget; Judge Mary Nevins advised psychiatric assessment for Maura due to her “bizarre behaviour”, a comment that Maura maintains, was of no benefit to the case in question, and was merely a dig in an effort to embarrass Maura.

A somewhat misunderstood individual, Maura simply fights for what she believes is right. There is no denying her dedication to protesting against this project. Even after almost 11 years, her enthusiasm still remains.

Posted Date: 18 October 2012


via Shell to Sea.

via Shell to Sea.

1,600 billion – Massive scale of oil giveaway revealed in Shell to Sea report

our” government is squarely to blame, “our” government intends to continue on this path, “our” government has no respect for nor allegience to the Irish people, “our” government has been bought and paid for, “our” government couldn’t care less. They get their orders from elsewhere, that much is plain to see.

But hey, wait until the next election, eh?? Let’s get this lot out and replace them with the other lot!! Things will get better then, …won’t they???

via 1,600 billion – Massive scale of oil giveaway revealed in Shell to Sea report | OneWorldChronicle.

via 1,600 billion – Massive scale of oil giveaway revealed in Shell to Sea report | OneWorldChronicle.

90 +Wines in dublin

With a critical score of 90 points+


The Casual Way to Discuss Movies


...because it was never black & white

Trying to live a creative life


Movies, thoughts, thoughts about movies.


Saving you from one cinematic disaster at a time.

From 1 Blogger 2 Another

Sharing Great Blog Posts

Wonders in the Dark

Cinema, music, opera, books, television, theater

Just Reviews

Just another site

Mark David Welsh

Feeding Soda Pop to the Thirsty Pigs since 2013


Things I never thunk before.

News from the San Diego Becks

The life and times of Erik, Veronica and Thomas

The Silent Film Quarterly

The Only Magazine Dedicated To Silent Cinema

Leaden Circles

First a warning, musical; then the hour, irrevocable. The leaden circles dissolved in the air.

My Archives

because the internet is not forever


Up to the minute, fair, balanced, informed film reviews.


A Shrine to Pop Culture Obsessiveness. With Lots of Spoilers

Thrilling Days of Yesteryear

“Nostalgia isn’t what it used to be” – Peter DeVries


Viewing movies in a different light

Twenty Four Frames

Notes on Film by John Greco

Suzanne's Mom's Blog

Arts, Nature, Good Works, Luna & Stella Lockets & Birthstones

It Doesn't Have To Be Right...

... it just has to sound plausible

Rich Green Photography

The life of a photographer who likes to shoot just about anything.

Jordan and Eddie (The Movie Guys)

Australian movie blog - like Margaret and David, just a little younger

Octopus Films

A place for new perspectives on films, TV, media and entertainment.

scifist 2.0

A sci-fi movie history in reviews

The Reviewer's Corner

The Sometimes Serious Corner of the Internet for Anime, Manga, and Comic related things

First Impressions

Notes on Films and Culture

1,001 Movies Reviewed Before You Die

Where I Review One of the 1,001 Movies You Should Watch Before you Die Every Day

Movies Galore of Milwaukee

Movie Galore takes a look at Silent films on up to current in development projects and gives their own opinion on what really does happen in film!

The Catwing Has Landed

A Writer's Blog About Life and Random Things

MIB's Instant Headache

Anime, movie, WWE reviews, amateur filmmaking and video edits

Gabriel Diego Valdez

Movies and how they change you.

The Horror Incorporated Project

Lurking among the corpses are the body snatchers....plotting their next venture into the graveyard....the blood in your veins will run cold, your spine tingle, as you look into the terror of death in tonight's feature....come along with me into the chamber of horrors, for an excursion through.... Horror Incorporated!

Relatos desde mi ventana

Sentimientos, emociones y reflexiones

Teri again

Finding Me; A site about my life before and after a divorce

unveiled rhythms

Life In Verses

Gareth Roberts

Unorthodox Marketing & Strategy

leeg schrift


100% movies. Except when it's about TV.

Morcan Books & Films

The site for a new perspective on books and films

%d bloggers like this: