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Natasha Ion Climate campaigner
Why this profile?
Jackdaw is one of the biggest remaining gas fields in the North Sea, and its high CO2 content makes it an especially polluting field. No project that expands the fossil fuel industry is compatible with the Paris Climate Agreement.
What must happen
Banks should rule out direct financing for the project. Bank financiers should engage with Shell and urge the company to terminate this project, halt its expansion of all fossil fuel extraction and ultimately phase out production in line with the Paris Agreement’s 1.5C goal. In the absence of this, banks should sever ties with Shell.
|Oil and Gas Extraction
The Jackdaw gas field is located in the North Sea, 275 kilometres east of Aberdeen, Scotland. The area is estimated to contain approximately 58 million barrels of oil equivalent (according to Uplift, using Rystad Energy data). Once developed by Shell, the gas field will incorporate four production wells and a 31-kilometre pipeline that leads to Shell's offshore Shearwater platform.
Impact on human rights and communities
Multiple human rights will be violated by Jackdaw, because it is a fossil fuel expansion projects and will therefore contribute to pushing the global temperature rise beyond 1.5C. As such, the human rights to life, water and sanitation, health, food, a healthy environment, an adequate standard of living, housing, property, culture, self-determination and development will be taken from countless individuals. Climate change caused by the fossil fuel industry particularly threatens the rights of women, indigenous communities and all communities on the frontlines of fossil fuel extraction. In 2021, the International Energy Agency stated there is “no need for investment in new fossil fuel supply in our net zero pathway”.
Impact on climate
Climate-related catastrophes will be exacerbated by Jackdaw, because it represents an expansion of the fossil fuel industry. This is incompatible with limiting the global temperature rise to 1.5C, which is essential to mitigate climate change. Jackdaw is one of the 10 largest remaining gas fields in the North Sea, estimated to contain approximately 58 million barrels of oil equivalent (according to Uplift, using Rystad Energy data). It is a high-pressure, high-temperature (HPHT) gas condensate field with high CO2 content, making it an especially polluting field to develop.
Shell may seek to finance its development of the Jackdaw gas field through project finance lending or from its own capital. Between 2016 and 2021, 25 commercial banks financed Shell through lending and bonds issuance underwriting totalling USD 65.62 billion. Recent financing includes:
- Numerous bonds listed on the New York, London and Zurich stock exchanges with maturity dates up to 2052;
- A USD 10 billion revolving credit facility and a dual currency USD 7.2 billion and EUR 4.4 billion revolving credit facility.
2022-07-25 00:00:00 | Shell makes FID on Jackdaw
Shell has reached a Final Investment Decision on its Jackdaw gas facility in the North Sea. The project could yield an estimated 6% of the UK's total gas output and is expected to begin production in approximately 2025.
2022-06-01 00:00:00 | UK Government approves development of Jackdaw gas field
Following its April 2022 announcement that it was intent on new oil and gas drilling, the UK government has given the green light to Shell’s updated Jackdaw proposal. This is in spite of analysis showing that Jackdaw’s high emissions will not be sufficiently mitigated, not to mention the successful 2021 campaign against the Cambo North Sea oil field, a project that Shell was involved in. Several major UK fossil fuel projects have been approved since COP26 concluded in late 2021.
2021-10-07 00:00:00 | OPRED rejects Jackdaw development plans
The UK's Offshore Petroleum Regulator for Environment and Decommissioning (OPRED) has rejected Shell's Jackdaw development plans and the associated environmental statement. OPRED has cited the project’s “significant effect” on the climate, were it to go ahead.
2021-05-26 00:00:00 | Dutch court orders Shell to reduce CO2 emissions
A landmark court case brought against Shell by Friends of the Earth and more than 17,000 co-plaintiffs has ruled against the defendant. Shell has been ordered to reduce its total CO2 emissions – including those resulting from the burning of the fossil fuels it produces – by 45% by the end of 2030, compared with 2019 levels. The Dutch court found Shell’s sustainability policy to be insufficiently “concrete”.
2005-01-10 00:00:00 | Jackdaw gas field discovered
Found 30 kilometres southeast of Shell's Shearwater platform, the gas field was appraised between 2007 and 2012.