Shell considers N624billion investment in gas projects in Nigeria

Shell is considering investing $4 billion (about N624billion) in the development of some onshore projects to help capture the abundant natural gas resources in the Niger Delta region.  
Shell’s Chief Executive Officer, Peter Voser, said on Wednesday that with the return of normalcy in the security situation in the Niger Delta region the company’s oil production output has increased to about 800,000 barrels per day in 2011.
Agency report quotes Mr. Voser as saying in a conference for Shell in London that the investments in natural gas would support efforts by the company to harness the gas produced from its operations to eliminate flares in Nigeria in line with the monetization policy of the Federal Government.
“We expect these to be completed in the 2014 to 2015 timeframe, subject to approval by partners and the security situation,” Mr. Voser said.
Nigeria, which flared about 15.2 billion cubic meters of natural gas in 2010 alone, is reputed to be one of the world’s biggest flarer of gas, with Shell, which accounts for more than 50 per cent of the total oil and gas production in the country, responsible for the bulk of the commodity being flared into the environment.
Environmentalists describe flaring as one of the largest sources of greenhouse gases, which cause global warming. Most residents of the oil-rich Niger Delta say the gas flares contribute to acid rain, which also causes respiratory illnesses.
Voser said though the Federal Government amnesty programme has resulted in reduced incidence of attacks on oil facilities in the region in recent times, the security situation remains uncertain, as the group’s Nigerian subsidiary, Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC), which operate the joint venture in partnership with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) still witness cases of attack on crude oil pipelines.
An estimated 150,000 barrels of crude oil are reported stolen every day, Mr. Voser said, adding that most of the oil spills reported in recent times by Shell and other multinational oil companies operating in the region are as a result of sabotage to oil facilities in the region.

Last December, Shell suffered one of the worst oil spills in recent times, with the spill of about 40,000 barrels of oil from its offshore Bonga facility. 


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