Nigeria announced that it would finally clean-up the oil-contaminated Ogoniland in the Niger delta, and at the cost of $1bn, according to the Guardian. This came four years after a damning UN report advised both the government and oil industry to act urgently.
Royal Dutch Shell, which has accept its share of the responsibility, said however that the 55m pounds ($86m) it intends to pay in compensation to local residents will only be made “available when we are sure that the structures are in place, are robust and will be overseen correctly. It is very much the responsibility of the Nigerian government.”
Previously the Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari had approved the composition of a governing council and board of trustees to oversee the restoration plan, reported Bloomberg. An e-mailed statement from the office of the presidency added that these “stakeholders” would release $10m within 30 days of formally creating a trust fund to manage financial contributions.
The presidential office also announced that the petroleum and environment ministries, the United Nations and the state-run oil company, would all have representatives present during the cleanup process.
For its part the UN said that the recovery would be the world’s “most wide-ranging and long-term oil cleanup” lasting three decades.