Unity State oil pollution, South Sudan

<div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Description</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld"></td><td class="columns">Oil accounts for nearly all of the newly-formed South Sudans export earnings (98% of total revenue, according to the IMF); it has also been responsible for pollution, a major source of conflict between the government and local communities and resulting in the loss of traditional livelihoods of the local Dinka and Nuer communities. Soil and water contamination, loss of grazing land and deforestation are some of the negative effects[1]. One well-publicised case involves White Nile Petroleum Company (WNPOC), a consortium led by Malaysias Petronas, which has been operating in Unity State since 2006 in the vicinity of the Sudd wetlands, a Ramsar Wetland of International Importance. News reports say thousands were forcefully evicted, losing their ancestral homes and their livelihoods. News agency AFP quoted from sample results from the Thar Jath oil plant, which indicated that brine from the refinery produced a high salinity, putting the concentration of nitrate at 81.6 mg/l, above the 10 mg/l recommended by the the US Environmental Protection Agency. These figures came from German human rights organization Sign of Hope, which took water samples in the area. Nitrate measurements at this level could have serious health consequences, especially for young children[2]. These reports are dated 2009, but recent news reports appear to indicate that pollution is still a problem. Quoted by the Sudan Tribune, Koch County Commissioner John Chuol Wang said pollution from oil companies operating in his area was damaging the environment and water supply for local people. He said environmental practices had not improved since autonomy in 2005 or independence in 2011[3]. <br/><br/></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Basic Data</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Name</td><td>Unity State oil pollution, South Sudan</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Country</td><td><a href="/country/south-sudan">South Sudan</a></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Province</td><td>Unity State</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Site</td><td>Thar Jath</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Accuracy of Location</td><td>LOW country/state level</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Source of Conflict</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Type of Conflict (1st level)</td><td>Fossil Fuels and Climate Justice/Energy</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Type of Conflict (2nd level)</td><td>Oil and gas exploration and extraction</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Specific Commodities</td><td><a href='/commodity/crude-oil'>Crude oil</a><br /></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Project Details and Actors</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Project Details</td><td class="columns">The US Energy Administration Information estimates that crude oil production in Sudan and South Sudan averaged about 425,000 barrels per day (bbl/d) in 2011. Block 5A, which contains the Thar Jath and Mala oil fields operated by WNPOC, produced around 15,000 bbl/d in 2011[4]. <br/><br/></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Project Area (in hectares)</td><td>400000</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Level of Investment (in USD)</td><td>$30million (3-year initial exploration investment)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Type of Population</td><td>Urban</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Potential Affected Population</td><td>N/A</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Start Date</td><td>2006</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Company Names or State Enterprises</td><td><a href='/company/white-nile-petroleum-company'>White Nile Petroleum Company <small>(WNPOC)</small></a> from <a href='/country-of-company/malaysia'><small>Malaysia</small></a><br /><a href='/company/petronas'>PETRONAS</a> from <a href='/country-of-company/malaysia'><small>Malaysia</small></a><br /><a href='/company/india-s-oil-and-natural-gas-corporation'>India s Oil and Natural Gas Corporation <small>(ONGC)</small></a> from <a href='/country-of-company/india'><small>India</small></a><br /><a href='/company/south-sudan-petroleum-operation-company'>South Sudan Petroleum Operation Company</a> from <a href='/country-of-company/sudan'><small>Sudan</small></a></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Relevant government actors</td><td>Ministry of Environment, Ministry of Petroleum and Mining, Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation, Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Environmental justice organisations and other supporters</td><td>Sign of Hope, European Coalition on Oil in Sudan (ECOS), Global Witness</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">The Conflict and the Mobilization</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)</td><td>LOW (some local organising)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">When did the mobilization begin</td><td>In REACTION to the implementation (during construction or operation)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Groups Mobilizing</td><td>International ejos<br /> Local government/political parties</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Forms of Mobilization</td><td>Creation of alternative reports/knowledge<br /> Development of a network/collective action</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Impacts</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Environmental Impacts</td><td><strong>Visible: </strong>Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Food insecurity (crop damage), Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Soil contamination, Oil spills, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality, Groundwater pollution or depletion, Mine tailing spills</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Health Impacts</td><td><strong>Visible: </strong>Exposure to unknown or uncertain complex risks (radiation, etc…), Deaths</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Other</td><td>Sickness observed and water pollution blamed.</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Socio-economic Impacts</td><td><strong>Visible: </strong>Increase in Corruption/Co-optation of different actors, Displacement, Loss of livelihood, Violations of human rights, Land dispossession, Loss of landscape/sense of place</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Outcome</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Project Status</td><td>In operation</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Pathways for conflict outcome / response</td><td>Environmental improvements, rehabilitation/restoration of area<br /> Institutional changes<br /> New legislation<br /> Strengthening of participation<br /> New Environmental Impact Assessment/Study</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Do you consider this as a success?</td><td>No</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Why? Explain briefly.</td><td>Based on recent news reports, pollution remains a problem. </td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Sources and Materials</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Legislations</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Petroleum Act <br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Draft Petroleum Revenue Management Bill <br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Sudan Environmental Policy Act (2001) <br/></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">References</td><td><table><tr><td><p> [1] Norad (undated). Multi-donor evaluation of support to conflict prevention and peacebuilding activity in Southern Sudan since 2005. Available at: Accessed 15 February 2013.<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://bit.ly/12p7obg." target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> [2] AFP (2008). South Sudan villagers, environment suffer from oil boom. Available at: Accessed 12 February 2013.<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://bit.ly/XzvFUg." target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> [3] Sudan Tribue (2012). Oil producing areas demand better services and safety. Available at: Accessed 14 February 2013.<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://bit.ly/VhT4N7." target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> [4] US Energy Information Administration (2012). Sudan and South Sudan Country Analysis Brief. Available at: Accessed 15 February 2013<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://1.usa.gov/14W0DMG." target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Links</td><td><table><tr><td><p> European Coalition on Oil in Sudan (2009). White Nile Petroleum Operating Corporation response to concerns over water contamination. Available at: Accessed 15 February 2013.<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://bit.ly/12J8eez." target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> European Coalition on Oil in Sudan (2009). Sign of Hope responds to WNPOCs reaction. Available at: Accessed 14 February 2013.<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://bit.ly/11K8UoX." target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Global Witness (2012). Blueprint for prosperity. Available at: Accessed 15 February 2013.<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://bit.ly/VYYQRa." target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Sudan Tribune (2006). Understanding White Niles acquisition of oil concession in S. Sudan. Available at: Accessed 15 February 2013.<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://bit.ly/UmbWeI." target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Media Links</td><td><table><tr><td><p> ABNDigital (2010). Oil companies are polluting Sudans ground water with Klaus Stieglitz. Available at: Accessed 14 February 2013.<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://bit.ly/XOpBJH." target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> AFP (2010). Oil pollution a catastrophe in southern Sudan. Available at: Accessed 14 February 2013.<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://bit.ly/igyubR." target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> The Guardian (2009). Sudans White Nile marshes polluted by oil production. Available at: Accessed 14 February 2013.<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://bit.ly/YfVydN." target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> VIDEO<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> PHOTOS:<br/></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Other Comments</td><td>0</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Meta Information</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Contributor</td><td>Patrick Burnett</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Last update</td><td>08/04/2014</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div>
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