Take the Money and Run? Some positions on ethics, business sponsorship and making art

Is any money free from exerting an influence on the artist or art it enables? Is all money equally ‘good’ or ‘bad’, regardless of the source? In this Live Art Development Agency Study Room Guide, Jane Trowell from Platform has selected some key texts that are useful in helping to position yourself ethically with regard...

Making a Killing: Oil Companies, Tax Avoidance and Subsidies

Oil company mega-profits are being made at the expense of the public purse, as youth centres shut, hospitals struggle and the queues at food banks grow. Companies like BP & Shell receive major government support including direct subsidies and military and diplomatic services, but seem to pay very small amounts of UK tax in comparison...

Repeated Misadventures: Key questions for Shell on its Alaskan Arctic programme

On 8th January 2013, the U.S. Interior Secretary, Ken Salazar, announced a review of the 2012 Alaskan Arctic offshore drilling programme “to review practices and identify challenges as well as lessons learned.” The review to be completed within 60 days will focus on the successive setbacks encountered by Shell during 2012. These include its failure...

Russian Roulette – the BP and Rosneft deal

On 22nd October BP plc announced it had agreed heads of terms to sell its 50% stake in TNK-BP to Rosneft. BP’s official announcement of the proposed deal refers to Rosneft’s 2011 oil reserve replacement ratio of 127% and dividend of 25% of IFRS net income. However, there are a number of areas of concern...

A Secret Subsidy – Oil companies, the Navy and the response to Piracy

British oil companies are promoting a ‘fight against piracy’ to get a vast hidden military subsidy. In the process they have got an unprecedented amount of influence over UK military policies. Oil companies have talked up the risk from piracy to justify the use of Navy frigates, drones and helicopters to protect corporate oil assets...

DIRTY WORK: Shell Security Spending in Nigeria and Beyond

Shell spent at least $383 million on security in Nigeria between 2007 and 2009, according to company data leaked to oil watchdog Platform.[1] Shell’s leaked data is analysed in a new Platform briefing, Dirty Work: Shell’s security spending in Nigeria and beyond, which shows that a substantial amount of Shell’s security spending went into the hands...

London Late – The Big Money Games

London Late: The Big Money Games is a spoof newspaper that critiques and pokes fun at some of the more controversial sponsors of the Olympic Games, including BP, Addidas, Rio Tinto, G4S and Dow Chemicals. The paper has been produced by five organisations – the London Mining Network, the anti-poverty charity War on Want, the...

The Oil Road – Journeys from the Caspian Sea to the City of London

The new Paperback edition has a brand new Afterword… “★★★★★…The Oil Road opens the lid on the often-shady energy economy, weaving absorbing travel reportage into powerful investigative journalism…. If you want to know why oil matters, read this book.” – Time Out (book of the week) “An elegantly written travel book…will make you think the next...

Out in the Cold: Investor Risk in Shell’s Arctic Exploration

Royal Dutch Shell’s plans for Arctic exploration are exposing investors to a ‘spectrum of risks’, this new report by Platform, Fairpensions, and Greenpeace warns. Download the report (pdf) and investor briefing or read online below. The report highlights Shell’s failure to address key concerns for investors and environmentalists: • Spill response plans are inadequate –...

Risking Ruin: Shell’s dangerous developments in the Tar Sands, Arctic and Nigeria

Shell’s plant is located directly on my father’s hunting grounds and today, instead of feeding my family, these lands kill my community. Shell’s plans to expand bitumen refining in an area already devastated by pollution is effectively a death sentence for our culture, lands and people. Ron Plain This report profiles the global Indigenous communities impacted by Shell’s operations in Canada’s Alberta Tar Sands,...

Oil conflict in the Niger Delta – the role of Shell: a Platform briefing for investors

This investor briefing on Shell Nigeria was written by Ben Amunwa for Platform in April 2012. It provides an overview of the social, environmental and financial issues on Shell's operations in the Niger Delta region. It is recommended to investors who are concerned about economic risks, social responsibility issues and reputational damage. Download the briefing....

Letter to the Boards of Royal Dutch Shell and Shell Companies in Nigeria

A global coalition of NGOs, human rights monitors, academics and analysts have joined Platform in sending a letter to the Board members of Royal Dutch Shell and Shell Nigeria which holds Shell to account for its role in recent human rights abuses in Nigeria. The letter is available to download or read online below.