Abstract

Nigeria is a major producer and exporter of oil and gas in the world. Most oil and gas exploration activities takes place in the Niger Delta region of the country where there is high rate of gas flaring from oil and gas production. Although the federal Government of Nigeria had directed all oil and gas producing companies to reduce gas flare to a minimum by 2008 and stop total gas flaring by 2010 due to its effects on the environment and climate. Oil and gas companies are yet to implement these directives, making the country suffer intensive climate change, environmental degradation, revenue losses, chronic energy shortage, e.t.c. Despite the directive passed by the Nigerian Government declaring gas flaring technically, economically, environmentally and totally unacceptable, the oil and gas companies still flares billions of cubic meters of gas yearly. A huge amount of suffering, repression, depression, degradation, pollution and climate change have accompanied this long practice of gas flaring. Natural gas flaring emanating from hydrocarbon exploration has been internationally and locally acknowledged as a significant source of greenhouse gas emission and a major contributor to climate change. During combustion process, gaseous hydrocarbons react with atmospheric oxygen to form carbon monoxide (CO) – Incomplete combustion and carbon dioxide (CO2) – Complete combustion. Gas flaring also causes acid rain, produces air pollution and causes severe impact on the environment. This paper will extensively highlight the negative effects and impact of gas flaring, how greenhouse gases emission from gas flaring affects climate change, the environment and human lives and also proffer pragmatic and strategic measures to combat this unsafe, unhealthy and unfriendly practice in Nigeria.

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