Nigeria: Investigation – Nembe Oil Spill Exaggerated, Largely Contained

The claim that the magnitude of the oil spillage in Nembe, Bayelsa State on November 3 is worse than the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill, is an exaggeration; investigation has shown.

In a related development, the Arewa Consultative Youth Movement (ACYM) yesterday cautioned against the politicisation of the spill in Nembe, “by people with little understanding of how the clean-up process works.”

It was discovered on Thursday, during a helicopter and boat tour of the ground zero – OML 29 Wellhead in the Santa Barbara South field – that the spill, contrary to government claims, had been largely contained.

A boat ride along the creeks of the Santa Barbara River also suggested that the spill was not as widespread as had been claimed. The spill also did not extend to Nembe Town, a short distance away.

The OML 29 Wellhead in the Santa Barbara South field in Nembe, blew up on November 3, 2021, in unclear circumstances, including suggestions of sabotage.

Aiteo Eastern Exploration and Production Company (AEEPCO) jointly owns the well with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

Accompanied by, among others, AEEPCO staff and protected by the Nigerian Navy, journalists toured the area and neighbouring communities on Thursday, by air and sea.

It was observed that the oil spillage in the immediate vicinity of the well head was minimal as it was effectively contained with booms.

There were, however, traces of light oil along some of the waters a distance from the ground zero.

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