Shell refuses to clean up spill at Ikata community, Nigeria


Ikata is a relatively big rural settlement in the Ekpeye ethnic nationality in the Niger Delta. Its administratively located in the Ahoda East Local Government Area of Rivers State. Subsistence farming and fishing are the major occupation of the people. Shell Petroleum Development Company started its oil activities in the community in 1964.

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Basic Data
NameShell refuses to clean up spill at Ikata community, Nigeria
ProvinceRivers State
SiteIkata Community, Ahoada Local Government Area
Accuracy of LocationHIGH local level
Source of Conflict
Type of Conflict (1st level)Fossil Fuels and Climate Justice/Energy
Type of Conflict (2nd level)Oil and gas exploration and extraction
Pollution related to transport (spills, dust, emissions)
Specific Commodities
Crude oil
Project Details and Actors
Type of PopulationRural
Start Date28/06/2002
Company Names or State EnterprisesRoyal Dutch Shell (SPDC) from Netherlands
Royal Dutch Shell (RDS) from Netherlands
Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) from Nigeria
Relevant government actorsNigerian National Petroleum Corporation.
Environmental justice organisations and other supportersEnvironmental Rights Action
The Conflict and the Mobilization
Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)MEDIUM (street protests, visible mobilization)
When did the mobilization beginUNKNOWN
Groups MobilizingFarmers
Indigenous groups or traditional communities
Fisher people
Forms of MobilizationDevelopment of a network/collective action
Official complaint letters and petitions
Environmental ImpactsVisible: Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Soil contamination, Oil spills, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality
Potential: Food insecurity (crop damage)
Health ImpactsVisible: Exposure to unknown or uncertain complex risks (radiation, etc…)
Potential: Malnutrition, Mental problems including stress, depression and suicide, Occupational disease and accidents, Infectious diseases, Deaths
Socio-economic ImpactsVisible: Displacement, Loss of livelihood, Loss of traditional knowledge/practices/cultures, Loss of landscape/sense of place
Potential: Increase in Corruption/Co-optation of different actors, Increase in violence and crime, Violations of human rights, Land dispossession
Project StatusUnknown
Pathways for conflict outcome / responseUnder negotiation
Development of Alternatives-SPDC should take immediate steps to halt the spill, clean the mess, and overhaul its aged facility to forestall and further recurrence

-Shell should send relief materials and pay compensation to the affected people.

-The Company should demonstrate corporate responsibility and good citizenship accept their liability and avoid corporate deceit and arrogance in the Niger Delta.

Do you consider this as a success?No
Why? Explain briefly.The Spill has caused deplorable environmental destruction and exposed people to real threat of hunger, disease and untold hardship. Shell has not shown any genuine intention to either stop the spill or clean the impacted area, despite its consequences on the rural economy, ecology and people.
Sources and Materials

OilWatch report Nigeria 2002
[click to view]


National Mirror online
[click to view]

Meta Information
ContributorNnimmo Bassey
Last update08/04/2014