HYPREP coordinator urges intensified campaign against oil theft, vandalism

Prof. Nenibarini Zabbey, the Project Coordinator, Hydrocarbon Pollution Remediation Project (HYPREP), has called for intensified campaign against pipeline vandalism oil theft in the country. Zabbey made the call in Port Harcourt on Wednesday while speaking to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in commemoration of the 2024 World Environment Day. He said that oil theft, pipeline vandalism and artisanal refining had become hydra-headed monsters staring the nation's oil industry in the face. Zabbey said that the world environment day was a wake up call on HYPREP's mission and the ongoing clean up efforts in Ogoni land. 'The day provides us an opportunity to reflect, design and facilitate approaches to protect our land and commonwealth. 'It is an opportunity to restore degraded areas and discourage human activities that compromise the integrity of the environment and biodiversity,' he said. He said that all hands should be on deck to tackle the challenge of oil pollution occasioned by oil theft, pipeline vanda lism, and artisanal refining. 'We need to all stand up to protect our environment by not polluting it and taking deliberate steps to make it safe,' he said. The project coordinator reaffirmed HYPREP's commitment towards the remediation and restoration of oil impacted areas in Ogoni. 'The future of the Ogoni people and the Niger Delta region at large is hugely dependent on their land. 'HYPREP is equipped to lead the process of protecting the land and environment. So, a holistic approach is required to address the endemic trends that negatively impact our land. 'We are remediating degraded lands and shorelines, restoring mangroves, providing potable water and strengthening public health systems,' he said. Zabbey said that HYPREP's approach to community engagement was inclusive, consultative and participatory. 'This is because true restoration goes beyond environmental clean-up. We are actively involving local communities in our projects,' he said. NAN reports that the theme for this year's World Enviro nment Day celebration is : 'Our land, Our future: Land Restoration, Desertification and Drought Resilience'. Source: News Agency of Nigeria