Shell in Nigeria

Essay by ss_bookCollege, UndergraduateA+, March 2004

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Many companies are leaving their main country of operation because of increased labor costs, government regulations, and taxes imposed on them in the United States and other industrial nations. The MNC's are attracted to lower developing or third world nations because the labor is cheap, the government is easily bribed off, and the power that they can wield in the country is greater than what they could have in an industrial nation. Shell is responsible for more than just making a profit in Nigeria. Shell should have environmental, social, and economical responsibilities as they are a steward of the natural resources as well as a corporate citizen.

Shell has responsibility for the environmental impacts that it has created in Nigeria. The people that live on the Ogoni Peninsula have witnessed oil spills, natural gas flaring, and general erosion on the land. The international communities which include the United Nations as well as environmental groups have found Shell in violation of environmental laws on several occasions.

With all of the environmental damage in the area, the people of the Ogoni peninsula have to live with acid rain, barren and unproductive land, death of many varieties of fish, and the contamination of land and water which has had a devastating economic and health consequence. Shell is responsible for all of these environmental catastrophes and should provide either money or services to these people because of the direct effect Shell had on their lives.

The social distrust that has been created against Shell both in Nigeria and internationally has been building up. This distrust has stemmed from some of Shell's dealings with the ruthless military dictator of Nigeria that has challenged many of society's norms. Shell had on one or maybe more occasions used the police of Nigeria to disrupt the...