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Summary of the key recommendations of the UNEP report

Summary of the key recommendations of the UNEP report

The UNEP Environmental Assessment of Ogoniland

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) released its Environmental Assessment  of Ogoniland in August 2011. The report was commissioned by and delivered to the Federal Government of Nigeria. It makes recommendations to the government, the oil and gas industry and communities to begin a comprehensive cleanup of Ogoniland, restore polluted environments and put an end to all forms of ongoing oil contamination in the region.

Restoring Ogoniland

UNEP assessed that the environmental restoration of Ogoniland would require coordinated efforts on the part of government agencies at all levels, industry operators and communities. UNEP also presented its recommendations as a major opportunity to bring new investment, employment opportunities and a culture of cooperation to Ogoniland in addition to driving improvements in the environmental and health situation on the ground.

Multi-stakeholder response

The majority of UNEP’s recommendations require multi-stakeholder efforts coordinated by the Federal Government. The Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited (SPDC), as operator of the SPDC Joint Venture, is one of the stakeholders addressed in the UNEP report, although it has not produced oil or gas in Ogoniland since 1993. SPDC has initiated action to address all of the recommendations directed to it in the UNEP report. In some cases further progress is dependent on outstanding actions to be taken by other stakeholders.

SPDC is committed to delivering the UNEP recommendations directed to it as operator of the SPDC Joint Venture and continues to work with the Federal Government of Nigeria, UNEP and its joint venture partners on taking implementation of the UNEP report forward.


As the UNEP report stated, treating the problem of environmental contamination within Ogoniland merely as a technical clean-up exercise will ultimately lead to failure. Ensuring long-term sustainability is a much bigger challenge – one that will require coordinated and collaborative action from all stakeholders.

This must include putting an end to the widespread pipeline sabotage, crude oil theft and illegal refining that are the main causes of environmental damage in Ogoniland and the wider Niger Delta today.

Frequently Asked Questions on the UNEP Report

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SPDC and Ogoniland

The UNEP report covers oil spills in Ogoniland, an area covering about 1% of the Niger Delta. In 1993 SPDC shut down all production in Ogoniland due to threats and violence against our staff and facilities.

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