Extracts from an Associated Press article by MARAM MAZEN published 3 August 2014
LAGOS, Nigeria – Little action has been taken to clean up pollution caused by oil production in Nigeria’s Niger Delta region, either by the government or Shell Oil, Amnesty International and other groups charged Monday.
Oil production has contaminated the drinking water of at least 10 communities in the Ogoniland area but neither the Nigerian government nor Royal Dutch Shell’s Nigeria subsidiary have taken effective measures to restore the fouled environment, said the new report by Amnesty International, Friends of The Earth Europe, Center for Environment, Human Rights and Development, Environmental Rights Action, and Platform.
A detailed assessment of pollution in the oil-producing area was published in 2011 by the United Nations Environment Program, which said it will probably take up to 30 years to fully clean the area.
“In the three years since UNEP’s study was published, the government of Nigeria and Shell have taken almost no meaningful action to implement its recommendations,” said the joint report.
“The people of Ogoniland continue to suffer the effects of fifty years of an oil industry which has polluted their land, air and water,” the groups said. “Only some of the emergency measures have been implemented — and then only partially.”
The groups accused Shell of putting the blame on oil theft, rather than taking responsibility and acting on the findings of the UN report.