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Shell Telly Bingo Tuesday Night with Crime-Fighter Paul Williams

category mayo | environment | feature author Tuesday June 02, 2009 12:12author by Shell Ireland Report this post to the editors

The TV3 farce of the year can be extra fun with this one-off game

featured image
Truth? We Can't Handle the Truth!

Hi folks!
In the most hysterical hatchet-job to date on the campaign against Shell's discredited and disastrous inland refinery experiment in north Mayo, Sunday World crime-fighter Paul Williams turns shock jock as he presents a "documentary" about the Corrib Gas project on TV3 at 9pm on Tuesday, 2nd June. To accompany what is set to be an entertaining farce, we bring you a one-off Telly Bingo game so you can track whether any facts, relevant information or editorial balance creeps into the show.

As can be seen from its promotional blurb, the producers are openly promoting this as an unashamedly one-sided programme. After all, balance is tedious.

Paul Williams Investigates:

In recognition of the dawn of the Tubridy era in current affairs, the show will skip over all the boring bits: the health, safety and environmental aspects of Shell's refinery; fatal pipeline explosions at lower-pressure pipelines worldwide; the giveaway of Ireland's gas and oil; and will focus instead on -- to quote the promotional blurb -- "personalities ... and the various political and ideological motivations of those leading the ongoing protest."

Rather than look at the years of meticulous research carried out by local campaigners (how dull), it will paint a picture of technology-fearing and impressionable bog people led astray by a sinister band of "outside agitators"... No, not the thousands of gardai bussed in from around Ireland -- they're the sources, stupid. The baddies are the eco-campaigners, lefties, republicans and the like.

It will leave out the depressing facts (phew!) about Ray Burke and Bertie Ahern's multi-billion euro giveaway of Irish offshore resources to private companies, focussing instead on sensational sub-plots, such as unverifiable Garda claims of mysterious "armed gangs" entering Shell's compound. It will use images of a couple of republicans turning up amongst hundreds of local protestors to weave a terrifying tale of IRA involvement, without any substantiation (substanti-what?).

Paul Williams, Ireland's celebrity crime writer, is capitalising on his track record of dramatic fiction on this topic. In October 2006, he told a fantastical tale in the Sunday World, headlined "IRA take control of protests". Based on anonymous sources, it claimed that unnamed "Shell to Sea thugs" were threatening and intimidating people connected with Shell. Nothing has since been heard of this; no charges have ever been brought.


To make this unique programme more fun, a special Shell Telly Bingo game has been devised to accompany it. Simply print off this list (below) of 20 crucial aspects to the Corrib issue, in no particular order, including potential interviewees, salient facts, relevant experts and major news angles. As you watch the programme, just tick off any that are featured. Williams' track record and the programme blurb suggest that all of these will be ignored. But have your pen ready, just in case one of them creeps in!

Plenty of exciting visuals available here: explosions and such. A pipeline in Carlsbad, New Mexico (pressure 47 bar) exploded in 2000, incinerating 12 people camping 230 metres away. The onshore section of the Corrib pipeline (pressure 144 bar) will pass just 1.4 metres below roads, farmland, a beach and an estuary, and just 140 metres from houses.

Protested at the gates of the refinery in 2006 as Leader of the Green Party. Campaigned with Shell to Sea up until he entered government in 2007.

540 billion euro worth of gas and oil lies under Irish waters (Dept of Energy and Natural Resources figures). 100 per cent of this will belong to the companies that bring it ashore, thanks to legislative changes made by Ray Burke in 1987 and Bertie Ahern in 1992. Shell, Statoil and Marathon will sell the Corrib Gas to Bord Gais at full market rates. They are also entitled to export it.

Articulate and quotable west of Ireland TD. The Labour Party President has been a vocal opponent of the inland refinery and has spoken at campaign events.

All opinion polls taken in Mayo on the issue have shown a clear majority opposed to the inland refinery and supporting the offshore processing option.

Always a lively interviewee. The Socialist Party leader has written articles on the issue and has protested at the refinery gates. Hold on, that's two party leaders and a party president -- surely some easy Bingo points there?

An Bord Pleanala rejected permission for Shell's inland refinery in April 2003; the board's senior planning inspector, Kevin Moore, said the location at Bellanaboy was "the wrong site" on grounds of safety, environment, planning and sustainable development. Following meetings between Fianna Fail ministers, Shell executives and An Bord Pleanala, the company reapplied, a new inspector was appointed and permission was granted for the same location. (www.publicinquiry.ie/reports.php)

Renowned economist, author and radio pundit with nice, gravelly voice. Has written extensively about the stunning fact that Corrib -- and other Irish gas fields -- represent a net loss to the Irish exchequer of literally hundreds of billions of euro. He has written: "We gave the Corrib gas away and now Éamon Ryan is intent on giving away the remaining choice areas of our offshore acreage at less than bargain basement prices." (Irish Mail on Sunday, 14th December 2008)

Paul Williams is all about crime. So surely he will take a look at Shell's lawbreaking. The company has been caught breaking the law several times. In 2005 it had to dismantle 3km of illegally-assembled pipeline. Currently, Shell has a compound at Glengad beach for which it has no planning permission, in violation of the Planning and Development Regulations 2001.

Not mentioned in the programme blurb, but surely one of them will be interviewed? Jailed for protecting their land: that's got to have news value. Their legal stance was finally vindicated by Justice Mary Leffoy in the High Court in April 2007.

A prominent Shell to Sea campaigner until 2007, now the minister with responsibility for the project. Speaking in the Dail in November 2005, about the inland refinery, he said: "I contend that [Taoiseach Bertie Ahern] put remarkable and untold pressure on An Bord Pleanála to accept the Government's will and to do the right thing in this case."

Any representative of Pobal Chill Chomáin, a local community group, or Pobal Le Chéile, a local business group, both opposed to the inland refinery. These groups have this year been in talks with Shell and Ministers Eamon Ryan and Éamon Ó Cuív.

Irishman and former UN assistant secretary general. Has recently applauded campaigners and said he doubts "the ability and commitment of the Government to find a solution that best serves the interests of all Irish people”.

Any one of the three local parish priests, Fr Michael Nallen, Fr Michael Gilroy and Fr Seán Noone, who have campaigned against the inland refinery on behalf of their parishioners and have proposed an alternative refinery location at Glinsk. You get no points for Fr Kevin Hegarty: he's flagged in the promo as a "local priest" and an interviewee in the programme. "Local" in his case means Knock, a 100km drive away. He occasionally writes a pro-Shell column in the Mayo News.

The fact that the world's most prestigious environmental prize was awarded to Willie Corduff of the Rossport Five in 2007 in recognition of the campaign against Shell's inland refinery.

Wrote a book about the Corrib issue in 2007, 'The Price of Our Souls'. Former Latin American correspondent for The Irish Times and Guardian. Surely worth an interview?

Surely this has news value? In the very week the programme is airing, Shell goes on trial in a New York court, accused of complicity in the 1995 hanging of Ken Saro-Wiwa and other leaders of a movement protesting alleged environmental destruction and other abuses by Shell against the Ogoni people in the Niger Delta.

The practice used by Shell for Corrib, whereby planning permission is sought for different stages of a project at different times and in pre-emptive sequence. This is illegal under EU law. For example, Shell has now almost completed building the refinery, but does not have planning permission for the pipeline to bring gas to it. This is very dull: five points if it gets a mention.

Any independent gas pipeline expert or environmental expert.

Perhaps a media commentator to give a view on the phenomenon of "crime" correspondents covering a health and safety/environmental issue. In particular, whether Paul Williams is qualified to report on a conflict, in which Gardai are key players on one side, considering he is indebted to the Gardai for round-the-clock protection and gets most of his stories from the Gardai. 50 points if this comes up.

Have fun!

 #   Title   Author   Date 
   Great Gas Giveaway (new Report)     supporter    Tue Jun 02, 2009 09:30 
   Nothin but the same old story     Sundaworl    Tue Jun 02, 2009 12:50 
   Dammed Awfull memory     old codger    Tue Jun 02, 2009 13:41 
   The Great Crime Fighter     Observer    Tue Jun 02, 2009 15:43 
   Paul Williams     Brian    Tue Jun 02, 2009 15:53 
   Paul Williams     Spike    Tue Jun 02, 2009 16:05 
   SOS: E-mail RTE on Williams Hatchet job     James Kelly    Tue Jun 02, 2009 16:59 
   RTE?     mangina    Tue Jun 02, 2009 19:35 
   TEXT THE SHOW     text    Tue Jun 02, 2009 19:52 
 10   What Pat & Paul probably won't bring up in debate.     Tim Hourigan    Tue Jun 02, 2009 20:03 
 11   Providence smarter than FF? Or FF just corrupt.     Web-bot    Tue Jun 02, 2009 20:10 
 12   hope someone is recording this so it can be re-voiced and distributer     ec    Tue Jun 02, 2009 21:10 
 13   Lies and propaganda     Fintan Lane    Tue Jun 02, 2009 22:15 
 14   Video     BH    Tue Jun 02, 2009 22:16 
 15   Phoenix articles     W    Tue Jun 02, 2009 22:18 
 16   Phoenix article from 8 May 2009     W    Tue Jun 02, 2009 22:35 
 17   Last time I checked the Nazis lost...     William de Worde    Tue Jun 02, 2009 23:39 
 18   spokesmen     tv    Wed Jun 03, 2009 01:00 
 19   In defence of Paul Williams     JM    Wed Jun 03, 2009 01:13 
 20   To person that put link to Great Gas give away Report     Error    Wed Jun 03, 2009 01:39 
 21   advertising     Grover13    Wed Jun 03, 2009 09:00 
 22   We need a new poltical advocacy group     Supporter    Wed Jun 03, 2009 10:11 
 23   rossport on pat kenny - now- 10.35am     ARTY -EEEEEEEEEEEEEE    Wed Jun 03, 2009 10:38 
 24   Corrib Gas and the media     Miriam Cotton    Wed Jun 03, 2009 10:51 
 25   Audio of Pat Kenny Show Interview     Mark C    Wed Jun 03, 2009 11:21 
 26   Internet     John    Wed Jun 03, 2009 11:35 
 27   Brutal Ignorance     Seán Ryan    Wed Jun 03, 2009 11:54 
 28   Paul Williams double-jobbing     Shane    Wed Jun 03, 2009 11:59 
 29   Project splitting     Miriam    Wed Jun 03, 2009 12:17 
 30   models of radical democracy     ciaran    Wed Jun 03, 2009 12:22 
 31   Time and opposition splitters     Seán Ryan    Wed Jun 03, 2009 12:33 
 32   reflection     old codger    Wed Jun 03, 2009 12:47 
 33   TV programme disgraceful     Fred Johnston    Wed Jun 03, 2009 13:39 
 34   TV3 propgramme a disgrace     Fred Johnston    Wed Jun 03, 2009 13:47 
 35   RE: TV3 propgramme a disgrace     Grover13    Wed Jun 03, 2009 14:02 
 36   the battle for the gasfields - tv3 link     linker    Wed Jun 03, 2009 14:04 
 37   'Shits in suits'     PJ    Wed Jun 03, 2009 14:25 
 38   politics.ie commentry     Dunk    Wed Jun 03, 2009 14:47 
 39   The need for a new group     Rationalist    Wed Jun 03, 2009 14:56 
 40   TV3 contact details for complaints.     PJ    Wed Jun 03, 2009 15:07 
 41   Keep it neat and simple just like the status quo do.     James Kelly.    Wed Jun 03, 2009 15:22 
 42   Great Gas Giveaway (pdf Report)     supporter    Wed Jun 03, 2009 15:29 
 43   I watched 2 minutes..     paul o toole    Wed Jun 03, 2009 15:38 
 44   forum for debate     andy wilson    Wed Jun 03, 2009 18:12 
 45   The Truth Will Out     Margaret    Wed Jun 03, 2009 19:29 
 46   Gerry Gregg     crookstown    Wed Jun 03, 2009 21:25 
 47   need for a new group.     jj    Wed Jun 03, 2009 22:49 
 48   .     Mick    Thu Jun 04, 2009 02:32 
 49   Paul Williams - The garda plaything     billy idle    Thu Jun 04, 2009 04:00 
 50   In today's Irish Times     Waul Pilliams    Thu Jun 04, 2009 09:15 
 51   RTE 's hidden agenda     paul o toole    Thu Jun 04, 2009 09:24 
 52   RnaG ar an scéal!     Frank    Thu Jun 04, 2009 15:04 
 53   JJ     Miriam    Thu Jun 04, 2009 15:22 
 54   More mass media coverage for Williams     James Kelly    Thu Jun 04, 2009 16:51 
 55   You can't go on like this.     Fred Johnston    Thu Jun 04, 2009 20:14 
 56   Mark     The Eskimo    Fri Jun 05, 2009 09:58 
 57   talking sense     pragma s2s    Fri Jun 05, 2009 12:38 
 58   Fred 's points     PR    Fri Jun 05, 2009 13:37 
 59   Shell to Sea people did not speak to Paul Williams.     Local resident    Fri Jun 05, 2009 23:26 
 60   International best practices     paul o toole    Sat Jun 06, 2009 15:38 
 61   Question for Paul O Toole     T    Sat Jun 06, 2009 15:47 
 62   Maura Out     J K    Sat Jun 06, 2009 20:16 
 63   Suit Yourself . . . .     Fred Johnston    Sat Jun 06, 2009 20:21 
 64   that's the problem     old codger    Sun Jun 07, 2009 11:05 
 65   Battle for the Gas Fields     Praxis Pictures / TV3    Sun Jun 07, 2009 18:58 
 66   Media     paul o toole    Sun Jun 07, 2009 19:07 
 67   Spokespeople     Andy Wilson    Sun Jun 07, 2009 23:39 
 68   A few questions     shoegirl    Mon Jun 08, 2009 14:07 
 69   Info for Shoegirl     Mayoman    Mon Jun 08, 2009 14:17 
 70   not     TQ    Mon Jun 08, 2009 20:55 
 71   There are still FF councillors in Mayo!     shoegirl    Fri Jun 12, 2009 16:03 
 72   Williams in the Phoenix     Not the Phoenix,but anyway. . . .    Sat Jun 20, 2009 13:24 
 73   advertising contract     drawlite    Wed Jun 24, 2009 00:36 
 74   complaints     bcci    Wed Sep 30, 2009 11:34 
 75   In beyond satire news:     Oscar    Tue Jan 12, 2010 17:40 
 76   Surely...     Garda Stooge    Wed Jan 13, 2010 15:55 
 77   not     own harasser    Thu Jan 14, 2010 00:26 
 78   Youtude video: Paul Williams nomination     eco joe    Fri Jan 15, 2010 10:37 
 79   who voted for this?     Curious    Sat Jan 16, 2010 07:41 
 80   Chance of winning slim     co co    Mon Jan 18, 2010 10:49 
 81   story     raoirse sonan    Mon Jan 18, 2010 14:55 

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