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Incessant air pollution dangerous to our health-Rivers Communities

Residents of Eleme communities in Eleme Local Gov­ernment Area of Riv­ers State have raised the alarm over the incessant pollution of the air they breathe by the activities of companies operating in their area.

They lamented that chemical companies such as petrochemical and fer­tiliser companies operat­ing within their environ­ment in addition to gas flaring from petroleum refinery have continued to pump poisonous gas into the air which people breathe for survival.

The alarm was raised during a sensitisation Summit on Environ­mental, Social and Hu­man Rights Impacts of oil pollution organised in the area by a non-gov­ernmental organisation, Centre for Environment, Human Rights and De­velopment (CEHRD) in collaboration with Cath­olic Organisation for Relief and Development Aid (CORDAID).

Participants at the summit who were drawn from different com­munities in Eleme LGA lamented the air pollu­tion, coupled with the pollution of their lands and water sources by oil operations which they said have turned their communities into an en­vironmentally dangerous place to live in.

They noted that al­though there are envi­ronmental laws and reg­ulations to regulate the impacts of the activities of the companies on the environment, the govern­ment have failed woefully in the area of the enforce­ment of such laws and regu­lations.

The communities urged the federal government to expedite actions towards the planned clean-up pro­gramme and to take urgent steps to regulate air pollu­tion in Eleme.

The CEHRD’s Project Officer, Mrs Rukevwe Siak­pere-Ekine who facilitated the summit, commended the communities for articu­lating their concerns and for their fruitful contribu­tions during the meeting.


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