SPDC’s pipeline spilled 276 barrels into riverine communities in April – Report
The 14-Inch crude trunkline operated by Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) in the Niger Delta spilled 276 barrels of Shell’s Bonny Light crude blend in three incidents in April 2021.
The Okordia-Rumekpe crude pipeline is part of the Trans Niger Pipeline (TNP) network crisscrossing SPDC’s onshore fields which conveys crude to the oil firm’s crude export terminal at Bonny in Rivers.
It was learnt on Monday that the 276 barrels of crude was the cumulative volume of spill from a section of the pipeline that transverses Bayelsa and Rivers communities in the month under review.
Checks at the oil firm’s spill incident portal indicates that two of the spills were caused by sabotage while one was traced to equipment failure.
According to Joint Investigation Visit (JIV) reports on the incidents, the leak which occurred at Ikararama in Bayelsa on April 7 traceable to equipment failure caused a leakage of 110 barrels.
JIV is a statutory exercise to ascertain the cause of any recorded spill incident involving oil firms, regulators, host communities and state Ministries of Environment.
The JIV reports shows that the spill reported on April 7, at Ikarama in Bayelsa was traced to equipment failure discharged some 110 barrels into the environment
The leak incident on April 13 at Ihuowu in Rivers attributed to sabotage by the JIV report caused a spill of 157 barrels of crude.
The report further showed that also on April 14 at Ukpeliede in Rivers, the same Okordia-Rumekpe trunkline was breached by vandals leaving a leak of nine barrels.
According to the SPDC’s spills records, oil spill response activities were ongoing at the spill sites while recovery of spilled crude would be completed in May 2021.
Also, SPDC reported that it concluded investigation in seven spill incidents from its operations across the Niger Delta with a total spilled volume of 435.01 barrels of crude.
Of the seven leak incidents, six were caused by sabotage while one was traced to equipment failure.
Mr Bamidele Odugbesan, media relations manager at SPDC declined comments on the integrity of the frequently breached 14-inch Okordia-Rumekpe pipeline.
By Kenechukwu Obiajuru, Yenagoa