UN Report says oil spill clean-up in Ogoniland disastrous

A comprehensive cleaning up of oil spills in Nigeria ‘s Ogoniland with disastrous consequences to the environment, may take up to 30 years, according to the United Nations Environmental Program report released Thursday.

“The environmental restoration of Ogoniland could prove to be the world’s most wide-ranging and long term oil clean-up exercise ever undertaken if contaminated drinking water, land, creeks and important ecosystems such as mangroves are to be brought back to full, productive health,” the UNEP report stated.

“While some on-the-ground results could be immediate, overall the report estimates that countering and cleaning up the pollution and catalyzing a sustainable recovery of Ogoniland could take 25 to 30 years,” the UNEP said.

“The impact of oil on mangrove vegetation has been disastrous,” the reported stated.

“The oil industry has been a key sector of the Nigerian economy for over 50 years, but many Nigerians have paid a high price, as this assessment underlines,” he said.

The UNEP stated that its study discovered in at least 10 Ogoni communities where drinking water was contaminated with high levels of hydrocarbons, threatening public health.

It hoped its findings could break decades of deadlock in Nigeria ’s main oil producing region, as well as provide the foundation for a sustainable development issues facing people in Ogoniland.

Unrest in the Niger Delta, which prevents Nigeria from pumping crude oil to its 3.2 million b/d capacity over the years, have largely been linked to communities aggrieved by severe pollution of their environment including farmlands and fishing waters.

Royal Dutch Shell, the major operator in Ogoniland before series of community clashes in the early 1990s, forced the company to abandon its facilities in the area, said it welcomed the UNEP report.

“We welcome the submission of the UNEP report to the Nigerian government. We will study it carefully and comment further once we have done so,” a Shell spokeswoman told Platts in Lagos .

Shell had been having a running battle with communities in Ogoniland, who have vowed never to allow the oil firm return back to its oil wells in the area.

Shell on Wednesday admitted to being liable to two major oil spills in Niger Delta’s Bodo community in 2008, and agreed to pay compensation, following a class suit filed against the oil company at a London court.

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  • Is Shell ex-CEO Hofmeister reading this altrcie? So far, industry expatriates are careful about keeping the skeletons in the closet, and the sloppy housekeeping under the rug BP and SHELL and CHEVRON et al ( we’re in this together ), are certainly well aware of limits on oil production, and the old ways of doing things are coming to a close. The curious thing is, how do they plan to make honorable change in the way they operate, and how shall they be involved in the shift from the rubber tire economy? Rubber tire transport has had a good run; from circa WWII until the present, the railway component has given way to trucking and the Happy Motoring mantra that is the dream of most of the populations of the world. Economic slight-of -hand, convenience not energy efficiencies ruling, has got us to a very precarious state of affairs. Military overhang, hidden subsidies and collateral expenses with air & water quality and medical costs and land use show a cumulative caution flag. Military component costs alone shouts for early steps to back away from the pursuit of oil. Alliances completely irrational (China and Iran?) are artifacts based entirely on oil supply. USA has many equally strange bedfellow relationships, links that shall seem ridiculous when oil is taken out of the equation, -or added- expect mighty rattling of cages and chair shuffling when Israel announces large oil reserves Speaking now to England & America: A common legacy enjoyed has been a very comprehensive railway network, the matrix of adequate main lines, secondary feeders and small town branch lines. Japan and France also can show historical rail branch line history, offering a reasonable standard of living before the rush was on for oil, included to broaden the scope, for a moment. USA Rail Map Atlas Volumes can be obtained from spv.co.uk, to refresh recollection of planners. To cases: Oil companies wishing to begin shift from oil search and extraction would do well to select certain dormant rail corridor for investment and maintained cash flow through the Oil Interregnum.Oil exporting countries with sovereign cash reserves should also consider the benefits of railway line rebuild and ownership. Oil company executives in position and retired should think about the consequences in being, as well as events that took place on their watch. The BP nightmare is going to infect the entire industry, as a full catalog of misbehavior regarding environmental carelessness is documented. Assisting the shift from oil dependence cannot be dismissed as part of the Oil Company reckoning solution set. It is with due respect to corporate consciences, we at tahoevalleylines (see our postings in theoildrum) make proposal to vastly expand the capacity & reach of railway mains, rebuild dormant branch lines, thereby enabling systematic reduction of oil consumption in transport. In the US, reformed Army/Guard Railroad Operating & Maintenance Battalions may take part in prioritization and rebuild of strategic branch rail corridor. Agricultural traffic rail lines must be returned to service as trucking falters under Federal Executive Emergency Orders for motor fuel rationing. No secret to Boone Pickens and Matthew Simmons; by association making the rest of the Oil Executives obvious co-conspirators in this awareness. Railway savvy comes at Suntrain Transportation Corporation page, and companion book: ELECTRIC WATER by Christopher C. Swan. See also peakoil.net, look at ASPO altrcies 374 and 1037 in Newsletter 42 & 89, respectively. Railway capacity with local service enhancement is not the only element that is needful in Post Carbon Britain & America, simply the one crucial task that must take place to avoid war and famine