Oil Spills Injustices in the Niger Delta Region: Reflections on Oil Industry Failure In Relation To the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Report


For several decades, oil spills in the Niger Delta region caused widespread contamination of the environment with severe threat to immediate communities and sustainable development. Although there is a clear understanding of its true scale, magnitude and intensity of oil spill across the gamut of the Niger Delta region, however, this cannot be compared to the Gulf of Mexico oil spills in the USA in 2010 which drew the attention of the media globally. Evidently, the UNEP report conducted by an independent assessment after several field investigations and laboratory analysis of samples revealed an appalling environmental contamination on land, groundwater, surface water and sediments with severe impact on vegetation, air quality and public health. Thus, this paper highlights the oil spill injustices in the Niger Delta and reflects on the oil industry failure on environmental protection as contained in the UNEP reports on quality of the environment which contribute to the disease burden of the immediate community. This paper also reinforces the data in several published studies on oil spills, environmental inequality and it impact on the livelihood of the local population of the Niger Delta region.

Keywords: United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP); Oil Spills; Niger Delta Region; Local Communities; Environmental Pollution; Environmental Protection

Article Review Status: Published

Pages: 26-37 (Download PDF)

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