NOSDRA is the Nigerian Federal Government agency responsible for monitoring and responding to oil spills in Nigeria.
NOSDRA Monitor oil spills and their cleanup in Nigeria through it's Zonal Offices
NOSDRA acts between oil companies and communities at the local and state level.
NOSDRA works to ensure industry compliance with the Nigerian legal and regulatory framework relating to the oil industry and the environment.
NOSDRA relies on voluntary engagement and support of oil companies to provide data, logistics, quantity estimates, soil/water samples and to carry out cleanup operations.
Key aspects of the process of reporting and cleaning up oil spills in Nigeria are briefly explained here:
There are many issues relating to reporting and cleaning up oil spills in Nigeria. These include::
Oil spills can be caused by breaks in ageing or poorly maintained infrastructure, accidents, vandalism and other incidents.
In the past 10 years, a number of spills have also been caused by oil theft, also known as bunkering. This is where oil is stolen from pipelines and then shipped to local or international markets. There has also been an increase in artisanal refining, when camps in the mangrove refine crude for local or other needs. These are unregulated and so can cause serious pollution.
There are currently no legally binding regulatory penalties or fines for oil spills in Nigeria.
Currently oil companies are required to fund the clean-up of each spill and usually pay compensation to local communities affected, if the spill was the company's fault.
A recent court case related to repeated oil spills in the Bodo area of Ogoniland argues that a failure by companies to adequately protect pipelines from vandalism of theft, or continuing to operate when vandalism or theft is rife, consitutes culpability on behalf of the pipeline operator.