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FG To Hold Oil Firms Accountable For Pollution

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L-R: Acting Executive Secretary, Petroleum Technology Development Fund ( ptdf), Aminu Galadima, Minister of State for Petroleum, Mr Ibe Kachikwu,  Head of Media and External Relations, ptdf, Kalu Otisi and Chairman, Society of Petroleum Engineers, Nigeria Council, George Kalu, at the 5th Oloibiri Lecture Series and Energy Forum in Abuja on Thursday .

L-R: Acting Executive Secretary, Petroleum Technology Development Fund ( ptdf), Aminu Galadima, Minister of State for Petroleum, Mr Ibe Kachikwu, Head of Media and External Relations, ptdf, Kalu Otisi and Chairman, Society of Petroleum Engineers, Nigeria Council, George Kalu, at the 5th Oloibiri Lecture Series and Energy Forum in Abuja on Thursday .

The Federal Govern
ment has declared that it would henceforth hold oil firms accountable for pollution in any community in the Niger Delta.
The Minister of Environment, Amina Mohammed, made the declaration in Yenegoa, the Bayelsa State Capital.
Explaining that her visit to Bayelsa was in fulfillment of the campaign promise made by President Mohammadu Buhari on the cleanup of Ogoniland.
The Minister stated that her ministry would soon commence the clean-up of Ogoni and the rest of the Niger Delta.
According to her, the ministry was working to make oil companies accountable for pollution in their areas of operation, and promised that measures  would be put in place to ensure that the enivonrment remained clean.
Mohammed said, part of her ministry’s mandate involved seeking alternative livelihoods for the youths in the Niger Delta, through the diversification policy of the Federal Government .
She said her ministry would also devise ways of ending gas flaring by channelling flared gas into economic use to guarantee sustainable development.
“The clean-up also has to bring dividends to the people, so we hope that, whatever work that comes out of it in terms of the cleanup, we hope that it is one that will benefit first the people of the Niger Delta.
“And, then we are very keen on the concerns that we have over the issues that have caused pollution in the past that we do hold the oil companies to account and that the polluter pays policy is firmly entrenched, so that there are resources for this to happen”, she said.
In his remarks, Gov Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State urged the Federal Minstry of Enrionment to convene a stakeholders meeting involving the government, the youths, community leaders, security agencies and oil companies to address the lapses in the operations of multinational oil companies in the Niger Delta region.
“It is a huge problem, but these issues for those of us who are living with them daily; these issues go beyond promises, conferences, talkshops and beautiful press statements”, Dickson said, and commended the ministry for showing such a huge interest in the issue.

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Micro-Grids, Solution To Africa’s Power Problems – Expert

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The incorporation of micro-grids into a hybrid system of electrification is the best solution for Africa’s power supply problems, an international energy consultant based in Johannesburg, Anastasia Walsh, has said.
Walsh, who described electrification as an ongoing and foundational investment necessary to realise all modern-day development objectives, urged governments in Africa to explore the use of mini and micro-grids as they strive to provide power.
She said, “Despite bullish policies, the fact remains that over 640 million Africans lack access to electricity. The effect of this is apparent.
“It impedes economic growth, it inhibits the advancements of self-reliant local communities and it threatens national security. African governments are beginning to rethink their electrification plans.
“Grid modernisation, specifically the deployment of micro-grids in rural areas, provides a promising strategy.”
She noted that attempting to replicate the centralised utility models implemented in the United States and Europe had not succeeded in improving energy access across the continent.
Walsh said despite this, it was as if many governments and utilities wrongly maintain the position that the expansion of the traditional grid infrastructure was the solution.
She said, “In areas where communities have access to the central grid, they still have to supplement the intermittency of the power with diesel generators.
“On the flip side, the utilities are financially strained because they are unable to collect revenues from their customers.
“The low rate of revenue collection is due to the unsustainable tariffs the providers impose on customers as a result of the political pressure exerted on them. This results in the utilities being unable to finance upgrades in infrastructure, further exacerbating the issues.”

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Cautious Optimism Greets Oil Discovery In Gongola Basin

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Exciting as the news of the discovery of hydrocarbon deposits in the Kolmani River II Well on the Upper Benue Trough, Gongola Basin may be, stakeholders, yesterday, insisted that the development would only be meaningful after the volumetric of the hydrocarbon is determined.
They equally noted that festering insecurity, environmental issues, dearth of infrastructure and cost of production were major factors that must also be taken into account, just as economically viable farmlands, as well as communities may be affected and relocated.
Exploring the many implications of the development, some industry players noted that the development is also capable of dousing agitations of the Niger Delta region, hoping that it would balance resource locations in the country.
Exciting as the news of the discovery of hydrocarbon deposits in the Kolmani River II Well on the Upper Benue Trough, Gongola Basin may be, stakeholders, yesterday, insisted that the development would only be meaningful after the volumetric of the hydrocarbon is determined.
They equally noted that festering insecurity, environmental issues, dearth of infrastructure and cost of production were major factors that must also be taken into account, just as economically viable farmlands, as well as communities may be affected and relocated.
Exploring the many implications of the development, some industry players noted that the development is also capable of dousing agitations of the Niger Delta region, hoping that it would balance resource locations in the country.
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), which announced, on Friday, the discovery of crude oil and gas in the Gongola Basin, northern Nigeria, noted that the commercial viability of the discovery coming from the drilling of a total depth of 13, 701ft before hitting oil and gas in several levels is yet to be ascertained.

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PANDEF Applauds OML 25’s Peaceful Resolution

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The Pan Niger Delta Forum(PANDEF) has applauded the peaceful resolution of conflict arising from the Oil Mining Licence (OML) 25 between the multinationals and host communities in Rivers State.
Leader of PANDEF, Chief Edwin Clark, gave the commendation at the official reopening of the flow station by host communities, including, Koko Ama, Offoin Ama, Belema Ama, and Ngeje in Kula Kingdom in Degema Local Government Area of Rivers State, at the weekend.
Clark, who spoke through a former Nigerian Ambassador, Godknows Igali, stated that the approach could be used to address similar issues in other oil bearing communities within and outside Rivers State.
He pledged his commitment towards working with the Federal Government in ensuring that the OML community engagement model is replicated in other oil bearing communities in the Niger Delta region.
Clerk commended Belema oil, Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) for their spirit of negotiation and peaceful resolution of conflicts.
“He (Clark) asked me to let you know that he would continue to work with you, work with the Federal Government and work with all stakeholders and ensure that this type of synergy is replicated not only in and around Kula OML area, but around the oil producing communities so that there can be peace”, Igali said.
In his address, the spokesman of PANDEF, Mr Anabs Sara-Igbe, thanked the Federal Government for moving the construction of the 85 km Degema-Kula Express Way away from the Ministry of Niger Delta to the Niger Delta Development Commission.
He said, “I thank the Federal Government particularly for moving the 85 km Kula road to Degema from the Ministry Niger Delta Affairs to NDDC, who will work with Belema Oil and SPDC”.

 

Tonye Nria-Dappa

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