Oil companies operating in Nigeria have abandoned at least 26 radioactive sources in the Niger Delta region from year 2000 to 2011, the Nigeria Nuclear Regulators said.
The incidence of abandoned radioactive sources in Nigeria is among the highest in the global oil and gas industry, the regulator said.
The oil companies accounted for about 90 percent of radioactive material which made them highest importers of radioactive materials in the country.
"They (oil companies) use radioactive materials in laying pipelines and oil wells drilling among others" said Director of Enforcement at the Nigeria Nuclear Regulatory Authority (NNRA), Dr Yau Idris, while speaking yesterday at the 3rd National Workshop for journalists on Nuclear Safety and Radiological Protection.
Researchers believed that there is high environmental risk associated with radioactive wastes that lead to cancer, injuries and death.