New Report Finds Regulatory Oversight Nigerian Oil Industry Remains Extremely Weak

WCEL Member Professor Damilola S. Olawuyi and Dr. Zibima Tubodenyefa have released a report on environmental risk management in Nigeria's oil and gas sector.

Oil Rig

The Report is titled "Review of the Environmental Guidelines and Standards for the Petroleum Industry in Nigeria (EGASPIN)." EGASPIN 2018 is the chief document that outlines environmental and safety standards that must be complied with by oil operators in Nigeria, to prevent, minimize and control pollution from the various aspects of petroleum operations.

The report presents an extensive review and evaluation of EGASPIN 2018 to determine its alignment with international best practices on environmental protection, especially during approval, operations and decommissioning phases of the oil and gas sector value chain. It also provides recommendations on improvements that would increase its effectiveness.

Some key findings from the report include: 

  • Regulatory oversight of the Nigerian oil industry remains extremely weak and does not currently align with international best practices on oil sector transparency and accountability. 
  • Although the 2018 EGASPIN, in principle, seeks to adopt best practice, using methods and guidelines that are consistent with international standards, transparency and accountability in interpretation and implementation remain key concerns. 
  • There is an urgent need to reform EGASPIN to make its prescribed environmental standards more rigorous and comprehensive, in line with international best practices. 
  • A reform of supervision arrangements to place the environmental enforcement functions in an independent body that is at arm’s length from the DPR is also long overdue.

About the Author

Damilola Olawuyi Photo: Damilola Olawuyi Professor Damilola S. Olawuyi is a member of WCEL and the WCEL Climate Change Specialist Group. Professor Olawuyi is an Associate Professor of Law at Hamad Bin Khalifa University Law School. He is also Chancellor's Fellow and Director at the Institute for Oil, Gas, Energy, Environment and Sustainable Development (OGEES Institute), Afe Babalola University, Nigeria.

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