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N’ Delta: Shell shuts down six oil platforms, 120,000 bpd shut-in

By Sola Adebayo, Warri

Published: Thursday, 5 Mar 2009

Hopes of possible improvement in the nation’s revenue earning from crude oil were dashed on Wednesday, as the Anglo Dutch oil firm, Shell Petroleum Development Company, shut down six oil flow stations producing 120,000 barrels of crude oil per day in Delta State.

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Our Correspondent

Barrels of crude oil

Findings by our correspondent in SPDC on Wednesday, showed that the company took the action in the aftermath of Saturday’s blowing up of its Trans-Escravos Pipeline by unknown persons in the coastal Warri South West Local Government Area of Delta State.

The strategic pipeline conveys crude from the production platforms and flow stations of SPDC in its western operation to the Forcados Export Terminal before it was blown up with explosives in the early hours of Saturday.

It was gathered that the management of the oil major opted to shut down the flow stations in order to prevent damage to the environment due to the oil spillage resulting from Saturday’s development.

The affected flow stations were located in the oil fields of SPDC in Warri South, Warri South West and Warri North Local Government Areas of the oil-rich state.

Investigation by our correspondent further revealed that the closure of the flow stations had led to drastic reduction in the quantum of crude oil being produced y the Anglo-Dutch oil firm in the volatile Niger Delta region.

Specifically, it was gathered that the production capacity of SPDC in the country had further dropped to 200,000 barrels per day as against 320,000 barrels per day before the latest incident on the Trans-Escravos pipeline.

It will be recalled that SPDC was producing 200,000 barrels per day in its western operation in Warri, and 120,000 barrels of crude oil per day in the eastern division in Port Harcourt before Saturday.

SPDC’s production in the Niger Delta reached a peak in 2005 when it attained 1.150million barrels per day, before it crashed to 320,000 bpd in the wake of the crisis in the area.

A top official of SPDC told our correspondent on Wednesday, “The management of SPDC has shut down six flow station in the west as a result of the vandalism of the Trans-Escravos Pipeline in Delta State on Saturday. The action was taken in order to check further destruction to the environment.”

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