By SEBASTINE OBASI
Pan Ocean Oil Corporation, an indigenous independent oil company said it lost more than $4.96 billion to crude oil theft and pipeline vandalism in its area of operation in four years.
Mr. Toni Ezeukwu, General Manager of the company said at the just concluded Society of Petroleum Engineers, SPE – organized Nigeria Annual International Conference and Exhibition, NAICE, that from April 2006 to 2010, the company lost about 40,000 barrels of oil daily.
“Pan Ocean lost a lot of crude through theft and vandalism in four years. The company lost over 40,000 barrels of daily in the last four days. That is from April 2006 to 2010,” he said.
He however said that to tackle the challenge, the company engaged the over 22 host communities from Ovade-Oghaefe down to Escravos in dialogue to provide surveillance on the pipelines.
He also said that Pan Ocean has deployed new technology to bury the pipelines deeper, so as to make them inaccessible to vandals, to forestall future theft of crude oil.
According to him, “In the area of technology application, we are currently installing a 20-inch 67 kilometre and 160,000 barrels per day Amukpe-Escravos crude oil export pipeline with the HDD. This new technology protects the pipelines from theft and enhances their durability.”
He also explained that the company is carpeting the entire OML-98 with hybrid, 3D/4D seismic data acquisition, with a view to prospecting the deeper offshore.
Ezeukwu pointed out that Pan Ocean’s Ovade-Ogharefe gas plant demonstrates the company’s commitment to domestic gas obligation with a target of 200 million standard cubic feet, scf, per day at full capacity.
He advised the federal government to adequately secure the pipelines in other to ensure that the refineries produce maximally. “The crude oil supply lines to the refineries are being devastated and vandalized. Unless that supply guarantee is secured, the refineries cannot perform at full capacity,” he said.