Residents in Gbarantoru and nearby communities in Bayelsa State are expressing concern over the alleged plans by Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited to flare noxious gas, as reported by the Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria.
A recent field report suggests that Shell has erected an oil well drilling rig, raising fears of a potential gas flare, with worries about health implications for the inhabitants given the proximity of the operation to residential areas.
Local resident Kembia Paul emphasized the potential adverse effects on human health, particularly for children, and urged intervention to protect the community’s well-being. The Progressive Forum of Gbarantoru, represented by Chairman Dakolo Ineikade, recalled the previous impact of Shell’s gas flaring on crops and buildings, expressing a strong stance against a recurrence and urging Shell to relocate the activity.
The monarch of Ekpetiama Kingdom, King Bubaraye Dakolo, labeled the activity as aggression against the community and the Ijaw nation, raising concerns about the lack of regulatory action. The residents, community leaders, and stakeholders are mobilizing to prevent the gas flare and demanding that Shell consider the potential hazards and move the operation elsewhere.
While the news also mentions Shell’s recent agreement to sell its Nigerian onshore oil assets to a consortium, the focus remains on the community’s concerns and efforts to prevent the perceived environmental threat posed by the alleged gas flare plan.
IMAGE: The telegraph