The Russian environmental agency has ordered the commencement of a full environmental investigation of the £20 billion, Sakhalin 2 oil and gas project run by Royal Dutch Shell.

According to Reuters, Oleg Mitvol, the deputy head of the environmental watchdog, will be visiting Sakhalin 2 and holding talks with project managers. Amongst those also invited are diplomats from Britain, Germany, Japan, the U.S., the Netherlands and South Korea.

Speculation about the long time viability of the Sakhalin 2 project has been growing amongst diplomats and officials in recent days as costs have soared to $20 billion.