Journal of Management Information and Decision Sciences (Print ISSN: 1524-7252; Online ISSN: 1532-5806)


Polluter pays principle under the Nigerian oil and gas industry: legal and institutional challenges

Author(s): Enyia, J.O., & Adams, A-I.J.

An important liability imposed on the operator in the oil and gas industry is the polluter pays principle, (PPP). This liability is to the extent that the operator is liable to pay the victim of any damage caused to his person or property and possibly remedy the environment in the form of clean-up. This is because the operator in the oil and gas industry causes series of havoc on the people, their property and the general environment either intentionally or negligently and either directly or indirectly through oil spillage, gas flaring and even effluent discharge. The law has imposed certain liabilities on the perpetrator of pollution through certain legal instruments such as the Environmental Guidelines and Standards for the petroleum industry in Nigeria, National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency Act etc., and institutional framework such as the Department of Petroleum Resources, National oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA) just to mention a few. At the end, it is discovered that the legislations and the institutions have not done much in holding the polluter liable to pay. This is because either the laws are vague, ineffective or inadequate or the institutions are not strong enough in enforcing the laws. This has become a very big challenge which allows or create avenue for the perpetrator of pollution to go unpunished in most cases. This research therefore, recommends a very strong enforcement agency or agencies that will be able to tackle this problem(s) and also a very effective legislation in Nigeria.

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