Senate Passes Bill Prohibiting Gas Flaring

Senator Albert gas flaring

Senator Bassey Albert

…Offenders to pay N10m fine for inaccurate data

The Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria on Wednesday, April 17, passed the Bill for an Act to prohibit gas flaring in Nigeria.

The Bill which was sponsored by the Chairman, Senate Committee on Gas Resources, Sen. Bassey Albert, consists of 22 sections including sections on punishment for the supply of inaccurate data, Gas flaring penalty fee, powers of the Minister to make regulations as well as an repeal of the Associated Gas Re-injection Act 1979.

It also contains that a lesser or licencee who supplies inaccurate data to the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) or to any other lawful authority will be liable upon conviction to a fine of N10 million or be committed to prison for a term of six months or both.

Platinum.ng gathered that in the past, the Act specified only N10 per thousand cubic feet of gas (scf) but with the Wednesday’s amendments, the bill now recommends a maximum of $2.00 per scf as gas flare penalty.

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It would be recalled that Senator Bassey Albert had on Tuesday, November 3, 2016, presented the Bill for an Act to Prohibit Gas Flaring in Nigeria.

The Bill will ensure that natural gas will not be flared or vented in any oil and gas production operation, block or field, onshore or offshore, or any gas facility which shall commence operations after the commencement of the Act, with an addendum that no operator shall establish an Oil and Gas facility in Nigeria without first obtaining authorization from the Minister for the design phase, the commissioning and the production phases.

The Bill was referred to the committee on Gas for further legislative action after it passed through the second reading. The Committee thereafter invited industry stakeholders and the general public to a public hearing on Wednesday, May 31, 2017.