Restoring Niger Delta One Farm at a Time
A lot of 21st century Nigerians wake up every day with a set out plan and ways of achieving this; it usually starts out with a clean bath, dressing up in clean clothes, eating a healthy breakfast, getting in a car – or a bus – and going to school, or heading out in search of our ‘daily bread’. This is normal for us and the future seems bright. But beyond the somewhat hygienic quality of our food and water, the fuel in our cars and all ready-to-use commodities garnered from natural resources, most of us are not exactly conscious about how we are able to access these commodities; the details of what farm or water source those things actually come from or who makes it happen. We fail to acknowledge that some people live in the areas that contribute to providing us with our food. Every day, in the Niger Delta region, many of such people trudge through extreme levels of pollution threatening their existence and sustenance all because of the ambivalence of a natural resource that they had no choice over possessing.
Oil spills in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria is one of the biggest problems facing the region since the discovery of oil, and a root cause of the continuous exacerbation of environmental hazards, economic decay, and deadly conflicts in the area. The indigenous people of the Niger Delta region have been living with the predicament for over five decades, suffering through the systemic destruction of the sources of their livelihood which revolve around the presence of fresh vegetation, clean water sources, and fish populations. Furthermore, rather than remain a blessing, the discovery of oil and constant oil spillage has caused the region to become highly volatile, overcome by high pollution levels, and prone to fire outbreaks.