The environmental and social impact of petroleum and natural gas exploitation in Nigeria
Journal of Third World Studies
Department of Biology, Fayetteville State University, Fayetteville, NC, United States; Owerri General Hospital, Imo State, Nigeria; Department of Geography, Fayetteville State University, Fayetteville, NC, United States; University of Port Harcourt, River
The petroleum industry is the most environmentally deleterious enterprise in Nigeria, because of oil spillages, as well as ineffective or careless waste management and gas disposal. Severe environmental degradation has affected the quality of life for most Nigerians, especially those who are located in the Niger Delta. The injustices facing the peoples of the Niger Delta are in many ways the same as those facing all Nigerians after decades of rule by successive military regimes. However in the oil producing regions, the suppression of political activity, the lack of legal redress for damage to the environment, and the resulting loss of livelihood, and the sheer ubiquity of human rights abuses by the region's security forces, have generated greater protest, in turn resulting in greater repression. The first responsibility for resolving the injustices lies with the Nigerian government, whose priority should be to alleviate the social devastation facing all the people of the Niger Delta region. Multinational oil companies operating in Nigeria should also share the responsibility.
environmental degradation; environmental impact; human rights; oil industry; social impact; Africa; Niger Delta; Nigeria; Sub-Saharan Africa; West Africa