MOSOP UNEP protest

Shell must clean up its mess in the Niger Delta

Dear Ben van Beurden,

Please commit to cleaning up Shell's legacy of pollution in the Niger Delta.


757 signatures

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The Niger Delta is one of the most polluted places on earth, laid to waste by an oil industry that does not respect people or the environment. It wasn’t always that way. Before Shell first discovered oil in Nigeria in 1956, it was a globally important wetland habitat with rich biodiversity, providing livelihoods for people for centuries.

A UNEP report has found that the pollution of water bodies in Ogoniland — one area of the Niger Delta — by Shell is widespread. Some drinking water has carcinogens such as benzene up to 900 times above World Health Organization standards. This helps explains why life expectancy in the Niger Delta is only 45 years.

Shell has been polluting the Niger Delta for over 50 years, but we now have an opportunity to steer it in a different direction. Shell got a new CEO, Ben van Beurden, in January. This represents an important opportunity for Shell to take a new path and clean up its legacy of pollution.

Most people in the Niger Delta cannot even remember a time before their homeland was devastated. Experts have said that $1 billion should be spent on an initial 5 year clean-up operation in Ogoniland but, so far, Shell has not paid out a penny. That’s why we’re doing this petiton to show Ben van Beurden how many people want the company to take action.

It’s a good time for Shell to act. Just twelve working days after taking up his post as new CEO of Shell, Ben van Beurden issued a surprise profit warning: “Our 2013 performance was not what I expect from Shell”. Security problems in Nigeria were cited as partly to blame. If van Beurden really wants to turn things around, then Shell needs to re-think its strategy on Nigeria.

Shell has contributed to the violence in the Delta and has set itself at odds from the communities where it extracts oil. It’s time for a return to clean water, peace and justice.

Dissent against Shell’s presence in the Niger Delta has a long history. In 1995, the Ogoni 9 — including the inspirational activist and writer, Ken Saro-Wiwa — were executed by the military government in Nigeria for campaigning against Shell’s destruction of their homeland.

Shell was forced to stop oil extraction in Ogoni in 1993, when Ken Saro-Wiwa mobilised 300,000 people to demand environmental and social justice. Shell’s response was to assist the Nigerian military in razing 27 villages, killing over 2000 people. Now, as we approach the 20th anniversary of the executions, the Ogoni people are rising up again, planning a series of peaceful direct actions targeting the oil industry. In December, there were mass protests culminating in the blockade of an oil refinery in Port Harcourt.

Will you join us to support the Ogoni people by standing in solidarity with them? The first step is to sign this petition telling Ben van Beurden to take responsibility for Shell’s legacy of devastation in the Niger Delta. We will be in touch soon to share the next steps in this campaign and how you can help win justice in the Niger Delta

Latest Signatures
757Matthew TanSingaporeSingaporeJun 03, 2022
756Marga GiliPalmaEspañaNov 24, 2021
755Katherine SampsonDevonUnited KingdomNov 24, 2021
754Nelly PRESTAT CHAUFFRYFranceNov 24, 2021
753Consuelo Serena VelascoStrambinoItaliaNov 24, 2021
752Tina BehlaBerlinDeutschlandNov 24, 2021
751Laura WeaverJohnson cityUsaSep 19, 2021
750Laura AderyVenice United StatesJul 25, 2021
749Dipo Oyewole LondonUnited KingdomJul 01, 2021
748Samira SamiraHamourCanterburyUnited KingdomJun 30, 2021
747Thomas WilliamsStocktonUnited StatesMar 31, 2018
746Sordum DeeyaaDenverUnited StatesDec 11, 2017
745Marina Blake LondonU.K. Nov 28, 2017
744Andrea MauroHuntington StationUnited StatesOct 18, 2017
743Patricia Murfay Palos hillsUnited StatesSep 11, 2017
742Marleen Van DesselBorgerhoutBelgiumSep 07, 2017
741Loren DekeyserOstendBelgiumSep 06, 2017
740Angélique GirolamiGhentBelgiumSep 06, 2017
739Felix BaadomMoghoNigeriaJun 24, 2017
738Ragnhild TorvaldsdottirMar 21, 2017
737Olga PASHBURNUnited StatesDec 12, 2016
736isabella wrayBirminghamUnited KingdomNov 30, 2016
735Chloe CassaboisParisFranceOct 30, 2016
734Edgar ChaoHong KongHong KongAug 24, 2016
733Kim GoodwinVictoria CanadaAug 07, 2016
732Megan BaguleyNorthamptonEnglandJul 29, 2016
731Maggie ReynoldsPrinces RisboroughUnited KingdomJun 25, 2016
730John MichaelLondonUnited KingdomJun 07, 2016
729Simi AdelekancamberwellUnited KingdomJun 07, 2016
728Ilona RandallUnited KingdomJun 07, 2016
727Annika DongrePUNEIndiaMay 16, 2016
726louise ticknerKingston Upon ThamesUnited KingdomMar 05, 2016
725Jahmella SmithBirminghamUnited KingdomMar 03, 2016
724Richa KhenmahPort LouisMauritiusFeb 22, 2016
723Charlotte DeaconKingstonCanadaDec 28, 2015
722Lauren NiedelChepachetUnited StatesDec 14, 2015
721Marisa JordanUniversity Park, PAUSADec 08, 2015
720Simone RoyState CollegeUnited StatesDec 08, 2015
719Sarah FaraLondon United Kingdom Nov 26, 2015
718will robinsonNov 10, 2015
717John Mark RobertsonBellevilleCanadaNov 07, 2015
716Joan HallLondonUnited KingdomNov 07, 2015
715Daniel Toate DonuPort HarcourtNigeriaOct 20, 2015
714Cassandra CarrCardinal CanadaSep 24, 2015
713Martin ŠtychFrýdek-MístekCzech RepublicAug 18, 2015
712Lisa HardlessBristolUnited KingdomJul 20, 2015
711Cathy CarrLondonUnited KingdomJul 12, 2015
710Lee MurphyLondonEnglandJul 12, 2015
709David Perk Seattle USAMay 31, 2015
708Emily JohnstonSeattleUSMay 30, 2015