December 2, 2023

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Incessant Oil Spill Worries Environmentalists

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Youths and Environmental Advocacy Centre YEAC-Nigeria, has expressed worry over the incessant crude oil spill in some areas of Eleme Local Government Area of Rivers State.

YEAC-Nigeria expressed this concern shortly after her visit to the site of the recent oil spill in Eteo Community, on Thursday.

Report gathered revealed that this was the second time, in about two weeks, that the Ogoni axis of the LGA has experienced crude oil spill.

On June 13, this year, there was an oil spill in Aleto Community, Okulu River, while the recent incident happened on Sunday, at Eteo Community, all in Eleme LGA.

TNN gathered that in 2018 and November 2022, the community witnessed same devastating incident of oil spill, which was reported to have greatly affected the environment, source of water and livelihood of its inhabitants.

Youths and Environmental Advocacy Centre YEAC-Nigeria, visited Eteo Community; the site of the recent crude oil spill to ascertain the level of damage on the environment.

Saddened by the devastating effect of the spill, YEAC-Nigeria called for immediate response to clamp the spill point to forestall further devastation of the ecosystem.

YEAC-Nigeria Executive Director, Fyneface Dumnamene Fyneface, expressed dismay that, “the spill reported in Eteo Community, happened about two weeks after a similar crude oil spill was reported in Aleto Community, Okulu River, also in Eleme.”

Fyneface told TNN that, “YEAC-Nigeria’s team visit to the site today shows that there are two spill points within the same area. One point shows crude spilling from pipe while the second point shows crude oil just oozing from the ground. We, the team was unable to determine whether there was another pipe inside that ground or the crude oil was just oozing from underground.

“Well, due to the non-production for the past 30years that oil mining stopped in Ogoni area in 1993 that Shell was declared persona non-grata. These findings are however subject to confirmation by Join Investigation Visit (JIV) Process to be led by NOSDRA.”

The environmentalist explained that they visited the site following an information received by Crude Oil Spill Alert System COSAS, of a new crude oil spill in Eleme LGA.

He said, “Members of the Youth Volunteers Network in the community and Eteo Concerned Youths told the Executive Director of YEAC-Nigeria, Fyneface Dumnamene Fyneface that the spill was first noticed on Sunday, June 18 in the Oke-Olebo Stream and has destroyed the indigenous community’s fresh water bodies and the naturally environment and continues to spread to larger areas as it is flowing with the water in its bank and channel.

“Substantiating the report with videos and photographs, the Volunteers and Concerned Youths said “Pipeline is not close to the area where this spill is noticed. However, there are Shell pipelines in the community which they are also currently working on a part of it but it is not close to the stream where this fresh crude oil spill was noticed on Sunday and our attention attracted to it.

“The youths also reported that there was an oil spill in the community in 2018 for which the community is currently at the Supreme Court against Shell, seeking for Justice(sic) and yet another crude spill that occurred in November 2022 as also reported by YEAC-Nigeria through its COSAS and then this fresh one.

“From the short videos of the crude oil spill incident sent, crude oil could be seen oozing from the ground and flowing freely under fresh water environment vegetation with some of the flora already withering away. “

YEAC-Nigeria called on, “National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA) to immediately lead a delegation of operators including Shell that has pipeline right of way in the community together with non-governmental organizations, the media, community leadership, political leaders in the area and other critical stakeholders to Eteo for a Joint Investigation Visit (JIV) to the spill site with a view of determining the cause of the crude oil spill and steps taken to clamp the spill point to forestall further devastation of the ecosystem especially as the implementation of the UNEP Report on Ogoni (Ogoni Cleanup Project) being undertaken by Hydrocarbon Pollution Remediation Project (HYPREP) is ongoing in the Ogoni area.”

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