The Oilwatch Latin America network, through three of its member organizations and MilieuDefensie – Friends of the Earth Netherlands present a collection of texts about Shell’s Latin American operations in three countries of the region: Brazil, Argentina and Colombia.
In Argentina, the Observatorio Petrolero Sur, presents Hernán Scandizo’s text “Exportar Vaca Muerta, la quimera Argentina“. What does Vaca Muerta mean for Argentina, in all its meanings, is one of the central questions of this work; also how this megaproject is inserted in the regional gas market and how big companies play a central role in this sector, highly transnationalized, of the Argentinean economy, especially Shell, which is one of the main worldwide actor in the gas economy. Vaca Muerta is an extreme energy mega-project that exceeds the limits of the Argentine State, not only because of its pretensions to insert itself in the world market or because of the inputs and technological developments on which it depends, but also because the different political, financial and corporate actors involved move with priorities and interests that are beyond national and regional limits.
The work team of Espiritu Santo from FASE, a Brazilian organization, elaborated the report: “The Pre-salt reserves in Brazil, Shell’s new frontier“, which deals with oil investments in the so-called Pre-salt Province, located in the South Atlantic, off the coast of the states of Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Espiritu Santo. “The Pre-Salt Reserves in Brazil: Shell’s New Frontier” shows a chronology of the company’s operations in Brazil, the interests in the Pre-Salt, the close relations with “representatives of the people” and, based on reports from community leaders where there is oil exploration, evidence the reproduction of a similar modus operandi of companies and governments in different countries, which also allows for the construction of joint strategies.
Finally, in Colombia, Censat Agua Viva – Friends of the Earth Colombia presents the text: “Shell and the expansion of the extractive frontier in deep waters” written by Andres Gomez and Tatiana Roa Avendaño. The report aims to analyze the investments and the role of Shell in the development of the hydrocarbon sector in Colombia. For almost 80 years, the European company has been present in the country, and at present it is profiled as one of the companies with the greatest interest in offshore exploration and exploitation. The text highlights elements of the oil policy, history, projects and forms of lobbying of Shell in Colombia, and emphasizes the oil history in the Caribbean Sea, from the first oil field in charge of the current Chevron-Texaco to the current developments in ultra deep waters that are constituted in the main gas discoveries, where Shell plays a preponderant role.