CSOs Demand Shell’s Immediate Restoration of Means of Livelihood for Polluted Communities in Niger Delta

Oluchi Chibuzor

A broad-based civil society organisations (CSOs) have called on Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) major investors to vote against the company’s energy transition strategy and immediately restore their means of livelihood.

The group, the African Network for Environment and Economic Justice (ANEEJ), in collaboration with several other environmental, human rights organisations and victims of oil extraction in Lagos, called on Shell to immediately commence a process of winding down further exploration of fossil fuels in Nigeria.

Speaking at a rally in front of the Shell office in Marina, Lagos, the Executive Director ANEEJ, David Ugolor, said the group wants Shell to urgently revise its 2021 energy transition strategy to align with Paris Agreement, of limiting the increase in the average global temperature to one point five degrees celsius above pre-industrial levels.

They alleged that, “the operations of shell, rather than enrich the people of Niger Delta, has become a nightmare for the people as pollution from spills and gas flaring has led to the complete degradation of the environment, destroyed the source of livelihood and inflicted untold pain and hardship on the people.”

They equally hinged their calls on the premise that “Shell’s climate and energy strategy falls short of what is required to achieve the Paris Agreement, of limiting the increase in the average global temperature to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.

“Shell’s emission reduction targets are intensity-based rather than absolute and, despite the need to wind down oil and gas production, the company plans to continue to invest billions of dollars in upstream oil and gas. It targets an increase in its gas production significantly, to reach over half of its business by 2030.

“Shell’s excuse that Nigeria is an oil-dependent nation hence the increase in investments in oil and gas beyond global targets to end fossil fuel extraction is unacceptable,” they stated.

The group said as representatives of Nigerian oil-bearing communities and citizens who are the victims of Shell and other international oil and gas companies, they voted an emphatic “NO” to Shell’s Energy Transition Strategy. They called on Shell to cut down carbon emission at source rather than targeting nature-based solutions.

Other key members of the group present included the Executive Director of Indigenous Centre for Energy and Sustainable Development, Legborsi Saro Pyagbara; National Coordinator, Publish What You Pay Campaign, Nigeria, Taiwo Otitolaye; National Coordinator, Ogoni Solidarity Forum-Nigeria, Mr. Celestine Akpoborie; Leader, Ogoni Peoples Assembly.

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