FG Considers Using Trucks For Crude Oil Transport Amid Pipeline Vandalism Concerns

The Federal Government has insinuated a new way to move crude oil using virtual means.

Naija News understands that the FG will use barges and trucks to transport crude from production sites to storage points and export terminals.

The Alternative Crude Oil Evacuation Systems were implemented to prevent production delays, losses, and other negative impacts of pipeline disruptions and outages.

The Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) shared this in a recent presentation titled “Stability in the Nigerian Energy Sector: Integrated Strategies for Infrastructure, Transportation, and Security.

Due to crude oil theft and pipeline vandalism, Nigeria experiences annual losses of trillions of naira. This situation has led the government to contemplate virtual means of transporting the commodity.

Addressing this concern, the NUPRC underscored the government’s need to champion the Alternative Crude Oil Evacuation Systems.

This approach involves transporting the commodity via trucks and barges, diverging from the traditional method of pipeline pumping.

It stated that through collaboration with industry stakeholders, the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission had sustained its commitment in implementing targeted initiatives and various measures to combat vandalism and crude oil theft.

According to the document, the commission stated, “Through increased surveillance and deployment of security forces, the upstream industry has in recent times increasingly enhanced the protection of oil and gas infrastructure from criminal syndicates who often target oil and gas installations to siphon off crude oil for illegal sale.

“The activities of the syndicates has led to revenue losses for the government, oil companies and other stakeholders, increased cost of production, as well as far-reaching environmental consequences and demarketing of the nation’s global competitiveness.

“The commission has therefore promoted the implementation of Alternative Crude Oil Evacuation Systems to avoid production deferment and losses and other undesirable consequences as a result of pipeline disruption and outages.

“This virtual means of evacuation mainly involves the utilisation of barges and trucks for the transportation of crude oil from the point of production to injection/storage points for eventual transportation to export terminals.

“For the new entrants, the ACOES provides a temporary solution for crude oil evacuation before the establishment of permanent evacuation infrastructure, such as pipelines or export terminals.

“Through properly laid down regulatory requirements, permitting and approval processes, documentation, accounting of produced volumes, synergy with the Nigerian Navy and other relevant security agencies, the commission has ensured safe and secured barging and trucking operations in the upstream oil and gas industry.

“Indeed, a lot of gains have been achieved through the alternative evacuation systems. The most evident is the NCTL line, which recorded as much as 90 per cent production loss last year due to crude theft. In Q1 2024 alone, over three million barrels of crude was evacuated and exported through NCTL as a direct impact of proper deployment of the virtual pipelines.

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