ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE FOR OGONILAND IN NIGERIA
by aframoaa on December 16, 2014 - 5:25pm
ENVIRONMENTAL AND SOCIAL JUSTICES IN NIGERIA FOR OGONILAND IN THE NIGER DELTA (GROUP 2)
The most serious environmental problem of our time is the global warming; however there are so many activities that contribute to it, oil spillage being one of them has become an environmental issue that requires environmental justice for those that are affected directly or indirectly. Environmental justices is the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people regardless of race, color, national origin, or income with respect to the development, implementation and enforcement of environmental laws, regulation and policies to make the earth a better place for all. After the 1978 incident in North Carolina where Polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) was dumped along roadside in Warren County, people of all race came together to fight for a right of the environment and that brought about the Environmental Justices Movement, because the environment is the primary contact of all, which if treated wrongly will cause social, economic and health issues to plants, animals, human kinds and the earth as a whole
As a group, our recent findings on the Ogoniland oil spillage has confirm that Shell has not been able to fulfill it promise as an oil industry that has a concern for the environment and the people of Ogoniland .Existing research emphasizes lack of information as a limited factor for public response. During the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP) in 2011 at Ogoniland, they reported that since Shell left operations in 1993 at Ogoniland they have not been able to do their clean ups and decommissioning as required by the law, therefore causing oil spillage to the environment and the people living there, causing economic and social issues due to the oil spillage. In the western world, oil spillage is dealt with immediately but the question here is why not the same in a country like Nigeria which has been producing oil for over 50years now.
Shell has taken advantage of the governmental bodies in Nigeria and Nigeria’s bribery and corruptions, for that matter has ignored it responsibility to the environment after they stopped operations in Ogoniland. The people of the land are suffering from the oil spillage which has destroyed their farms, contaminated their drinking water, sea life etc. Both the Government and Shell have not been able to address the issue of the Ogoniland even now that Amnesty international is involved. As a group we noticed the Government is to be held responsible, because just as we said above concerning the western world, no western government will allow shell to behave the way they are doing at the Niger Delta in Nigeria to cause environment problems to his people. From the report made by the UNEP both shell and the Nigerian Government have not provided, any tangible reason as to why clean ups and decommissioning were not done as the law demands.
In 2014 Shell accused the Nigerian Governmental Bodies for not preventing Crude oil theft in their pipelines and also sabotaging them, therefore shell is using that as a defends and blaming the oil spillage found by the UNEP on the government in that the cause of the spillage had nothing to do with them. With the statistics gathered decades ago and the most recent shows, Niger Delta has the highest amount of spillage in the world. In June 12, 2003 a massive explosion occurred in a major shell pipeline, spilling thousand barrels of oil across the region. Also, in the same year 2003 and 2004, 25 attacks were carried on shell major pipeline in Niger Delta. Various investigation have been carried out in line with the cause to the accident and it gathered that all parties (shell, Government, Military and Police) where involved in the nightmare that lead to the explosion. Furthermore, it was recalled that the above mentioned all supported and encouraged theft and illegal refining by collecting money from them afterwards (Bribery and Corruption).These activities contribute to social issues, environmental issues and economic loss to the people of Ogoniland in Niger Delta, Nigeria. The Governmental bodies and the Oil industry all have hands in the whole issue even though they accuse each other for not doing their work as required.
As a group we think serious laws, regulation and policies should be applied to all the industries and every organization that are likely to affect the environment directly or indirectly by their activities, especially the oil industries from exploration to production, providing adequate security measures which will be punishable to it violators from upstream to downstream. Local refineries should be built around town and cities which will be producing fuel and diesel for the local villages and neighboring town with domestic price, thereby also creating jobs for the indigenes as well. Furthermore, it will stop crime and oil pipeline theft, it will reduce bunker, will stop local and illegal refining that lead to oil spillage, Economic growth, Social activities and the environment of the people will take the other of the day while illegal aspect of processing oil will be buried as stronger security measures are put in place. Columbia, Ecuador, Mexico, England and few African Countries are having issues of oil spillage that are not completely dealt with. Justice is simply your quality of behaviouring just. World leaders should come together and punish severely anyone who violate the laws of environmental justice and make sure that people of Ogoniland enjoy their environment.