The Nigeria National Petroleum Company Ltd (NNPCL) has reported 157 incidents of crude oil theft in the Niger Delta between December 30, 2023, and January 5, 2024.

NNPCL
NNPCL

The information was disclosed on the weekly TV show “Energy and You” aired on the Nigeria Television Authority (NTA). The recorded incidents include illegal refineries, illegal connections, oil spills, illegal storage sites, and pipeline vandalism.

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According to the report, there were 52 cases of illegal refineries discovered, 32 illegal connections to pipelines, 25 cases of pipeline vandalism, 2 incidents of oil spills, and 3 cases of vessel infractions during the specified period. These incidents were reported by oil companies such as AGIP and SPDC, as well as government and private security agencies like Tantita and the NNPCL Command and Control Centre.

The locations of the incidents include communities in Abia, Imo, Rivers, and Bayelsa states. The report notes that 52 illegal refineries were discovered and subsequently destroyed in places like Owazza, Oguzor, Ohaji-Egbema, Omoku, and other communities. Illegal connections were found in Olodiama and other Bayelsa communities, as well as Udu in Delta state. Vandalization of oil well heads was reported in Okrika and Ebocha in Rivers state.

Of the total incidents, around 9 were recorded in deep water, while the majority occurred in the Central and Eastern regions of the Niger Delta, with 95 and 45 cases, respectively.

Crude oil theft has been a longstanding challenge in Nigeria, impacting government revenues, causing environmental degradation, and prompting divestment by international oil companies (IOCs) in onshore operations. The country loses a significant amount of crude oil to theft daily, contributing to ongoing efforts to address the issue.

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