Oil major, Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria (SPDC) has confirmed an oil spill at its facility in Bayelsa State last month.
The oil leak was reported on June 15, at an SPDC facility at Opukushi, a predominantly fishing and farming town in the Ekeremo local government area of the southern state of Bayelsa, according to a statement by the oil firm.
The spill discharged a yet-to-be ascertained volume of crude into the environment, the statement said, dismissing claims by residents that the oil firm was yet to respond to the spill.
SPDC operations in the Niger Delta region are spread over 30,000 square km. The oil firm is the largest private-sector oil and gas company in the country, operating a joint venture between the government-owned Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation(NNPC) and others.
It said the recent leak was promptly contained within the SPDC’s right of way and that its emergency response team was promptly mobilized, to stop and contain the spill.
“Spill clean-up is progressing while the joint investigation report is being finalized for sign-off by the team comprising representatives of regulatory and relevant government agencies, the community, and the SPDC,” the oil firm said.
Residents of the host communities have decried the pollution caused by the oil spill and claimed that clean-up was yet to be carried out.