UN hopes $1bn operation will boost employment and drive development among Ogoniland communities devastated by contamination from spills

A $1bn clean-up of one of the world’s most oil-polluted regions will be officially launched on Thursday by the Nigerian president, Muhammadu Buhari. But it will be at least 18 months before full remedial work starts in Ogoniland in the Niger delta, and possibly 25 years before all the swamps, creeks, fishing grounds and mangroves are restored after decades of spills by Shell, the national oil firm and other oil companies.

According to agreements signed last year in Abuja, $200m (£139m) will be spent annually for five years to clear up the devastated 1,000 sq mile (about 2,600km2) region in Rivers state near Port Harcourt. More money may be needed to restore the ecosystem fully.

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Source: Guardian Environment