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ERA blames oil spill-related fires on poor clean-up

By Samuel Oyadongha

Yenagoa—Environmental Rights Action, ERA, has expressed concern over the incessant fire outbreak at spill sites in Bayelsa State communities some of which it blamed on persons linked to the cleanup of the impacted areas.

It lamented the Sunday inferno, which ravaged the swamp of Kalaba and Ikarama communities of Okordia clan in Yenagoa Local Government Area of the state, leaving on its trail the destruction of economic trees such as raffia palm, palm trees and aquatic lives among others.

Shell’s alarm
Meanwhile, Shell Petroleum Development Company had, last month, raised alarm over alleged increasing trend of oil spills caused by third party activities in the Okordia and Ikarama axis of the state on its facilities.
Shell had claimed that a team, comprising representatives of the community, government regulators and security agents, state government and its officials established that unknown persons had removed a valve at the manifold, causing a spill of about 600 barrels of oil.

It was, however, learnt that a Shell oil spill response team was mobilised to the site on June 12 to stop the leak and effect repairs as well as recovery.
But the Field Coordinator of the ERA, Alagoa Morris, in an interview in Yenagoa lamented the enormity of the damage inflicted on the already fragile environment by the Sunday fire outbreak at the Kalaba and Ikarama spill sites.


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