Dublin, Ireland — Nigeria lost $81.1 million, about N37.47 billion, in one month, as oil and gas firms operating in the country flared 23.2 billion standard cubic feet (SCF) of gas in January 2023, according to a report by the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency, NOSDRA.
NOSDRA, in the report on gas flaring in Nigeria’s oil sector, stated that the volume of gas flared in the January 2023, was 20.82 per cent lower than the 29.3 billion SCF of gas, valued at $102.7 million (N47.45 billion), flared in December 2022.
The volume of gas flared in the month under review was equivalent to 1.2 million tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, compared with 1.6 million tons in the previous month; was capable of generating 2,300 gigawatts hour (GWh) of electricity, compared with 2,900 GWh of electricity in December 2022.
The agency noted that the offending oil firms were expected to pay penalties of $46.4 million (N21.44 billion), compared with $58.7 million (N27.12 billion) recorded in the previous month.
Companies operating in oil fields onshore accounted for 53.45 per cent of the total gas flared in January, with 12.4 billion SCF of gas, valued at $43.3 million (N20.005 billion); carbon dioxide emissions equivalent to 657,500 tons; power generating potential of 1,200 GWh and penalties payable of $24.8 million (N11.46 billion).
On the other hand, NOSDRA reported that companies operating in oil fields offshore cost the country $37.8 million (N17.46 billion) in the month under review and were expected to pay penalties of $21.6 million (N9.98 billion), for flaring 10.8 billion SCF of gas, which caused CO2 emissions of 574,000 tons and 1,100 GWh power generation potential.
The environmental protection agency disclosed that in the month under review, Delta State suffered the most, as companies operating in the state flared 5.195 billion SCF of gas; followed by Rivers State, with 3.907 billion SCF of gas, while Bayelsa and Edo recorded 1.308 billion SCF and 1.068 billion SCF of gas respectively.
Others are Imo, with oil firms operating in the state flaring 353.845 million SCF; Akwa Ibom 224.595 million SCF; Anambra 174.027 million SCF and Abia 147.399 million SCF.
In general, commenting on gas flaring in the country, NOSDRA said that in 2022: “12 million tons of CO2 emitted into the atmosphere contributing to global warming. Useful natural gas valued at $0.79 billion was burned by the Nigerian oil and gas industry, equivalent to fines at the value of $450 million, many of which are not collected. 22.5 thousand Gigawatt hours of potential power generation went to waste, equivalent to the annual electricity use of 511 million Nigerian citizens.”
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