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1 Apr 2021

Amos Abba, The International Center for Investigative Reporting (ICIR)

Nigeria: Close to $1 billion in revenue lost annually due to flaring, increasing environmental pollution in the Niger Delta region.

‘How Nigeria lost N439bn to gas flared by oil companies in 2020’ 28 March 2021

DATA obtained from Nigeria’s Gas Flare Tracker have revealed that Nigeria lost an estimated N439 billion to gas flared by international oil companies (IOCs) and local stakeholders. Gas Flare Tracker, an environmental monitoring tool that tracks gas flares in the country, was one of two online platforms launched by the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA) in 2019 to monitor oil spills and track gas flares in the Niger Delta region. A breakdown of the data on the total gas flared in the country showed that 452.5 million standard cubic feet (SCF) of natural gas were flared both onshore and offshore between January and December 2020.

… Director-general of the Budget Office Ben Akabueze had, in a recent interview, said that gas flaring penalties would be tightened in a bid to forestall future losses of revenue. This prompted a revised payment regime that resulted in an increase in collected revenue from $120 million in 2019 to $270 million in 2020. The gas flaring fine for companies producing 10,000 barrels of oil per day or more is now set at $2 per 1,000 cubic feet of gas, while the fine for companies producing less than 10,000 barrels a day is $0.5 per 1,000 cubic feet.

… Over the past five years, the country has lost close to $1 billion in revenue annually due to flaring, increasing environmental pollution in the Niger Delta region. From 2014 to 2018, Nigeria lost N301 billion, N243 billion, N229 billion, N227 billion and N233 billion respectively from flared gases. Nigeria’s Gas Flare Tracker also revealed that there were over 100 active flare sites in eight states where gas was currently being flared.