By EGUFE YAFUGBORHI
PORT HARCOURT — NIGERIA currently ranks among countries with the highest frequency of oil spillages worldwide.
Director General of National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency, NOSDRA, Sir Peter Idabor, made the disclosure in Port Harcourt, Rivers State when the Minister of Environment, Hiaja Hadiza Mailafia, unveiled the agency’s first marine pollution response vessel named Recovery 1.
According to the NOSDRA boss, most of the recurring spillages result from third party interferences, including pipeline vandalism, bunkering and artisanal local refining of stolen crude oil, aside operational failures among industry operators.
He said, “from the unfortunate and even tragic devastation from these incidents, most spill response efforts in Nigeria involve international support usually with great financial implication” in capital flight. With the acquisition of Recovery 1, capital flight suffered by relying on international responders will be significantly reduced while building local capacity and engendering efficient response to spills.”
He said that the vessel, the first by the agency, also meant Nigeria’s fulfillment of the transnational obligation derived from the International Convention on Oil Pollution Preparedness and Response Cooperation in 1990 to which Nigeria is signatory.
The vessel, Recovery 1 as unveiled has an oil recovery speed of six knots; a recovery rate of 50 tonnes per hour in addition to on board oil tank with maximum 48 tonnes.