Nigeria: Oil Pollution - Nosdra to Fine Sop Defaulting Companies N500, 000, Above

National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA) said to address the impact of oil pollution on ground water and environment by the activities of oil and gas companies it will begin the enforcement of Standard of Operation (SOP) by mid-August this year

The director-general of NOSDRA, Idris Musa who stated this in Abuja yesterday during a meeting with Deport and Petroleum Products Marketers Association of Nigeria (DAPPMAN) on 'Standard Operating Procedures and Guidelines for Facility Inspection in the Mid and Downstream Oil Sectors, said though the agency is more interested in compliance than sanctioning defaulters, but that defaulting companies would pay the sum of N500, 000 and above depending on the gravity of the offence.

Musa noted that the essence of the meeting was to acquaint stakeholders with environmental management practices and compliance monitoring of oil facilities in the mid and downstream sectors of the petroleum industry in Nigeria in line with the agency's statutorily responsibilities.

He said that is also part of the strategies to evaluate and address safety concerns as well as ensure minimal environmental pollution in the operations of deports, tank farms, terminals and retail outlets/ filling stations.

Musa enjoined the Marketers to procure a copy of the establishment Act of the agency in order to familiarise themselves with the extant laws and operations of the agency.

In his presentation, the NOSDRA director of Special duties, Mr John Lahu lamented that increased levels of activities in the mid and downstream sectors led to incidences of groundwater pollution, farmland contamination, fire outbreaks and tanker accidents across the country.

Responding, theExecutive Secretary of DAPPMAN, Olufemi Adebayo assured NOSDRA that petroleum marketers in Nigeria would work with the agency to make Nigerian and workplace environment safe for habitation and would avoid acts capable of adversely affecting the environment.

He pleaded for synergy between NOSDRA, ministry of environment, Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and State environmental agencies for smooth operations of the independent marketers.

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