Nigeria's Illegal Oil Refineries

Reuters photographer Akintunde Akinleye recently gained rare access to an illegal oil refinery near the river Nun in Nigeria's oil state of Bayelsa. There, he was able to document the secret and dangerous practice of oil bunkering, where locals hack into oil pipelines, steal the crude oil, and refine or sell it abroad. For over 50 years now, crude oil and natural gas have been extracted from the Niger Delta by large corporations, which have had their share of environmental disasters. The ongoing damage from the tapped pipes and these makeshift refineries continue to take a terrible toll on the environment and the local population. See also "Nigeria: The Cost of Oil" from 2011.

Read more
Hints: View this page full screen. Skip to the next and previous photo by typing j/k or ←/→.

Most Recent

  • Pascal Pochard-Casabianca / AFP / Getty

    Photos of the Week: 5/13–5/19

    The world’s fastest shed in Wales, France welcomes a new president, a portrait of the late singer Chris Cornell on stage in Atlanta, a new eruption of Mount Sinabung, and much more.

  • Carlos Garcia Rawlins / Reuters

    Venezuela's Crisis Deepens, Protests Escalate

    Since April 1, daily anti-government  protests across Venezuela have frequently devolved into clashes with riot police, leaving thousands arrested, hundreds injured, and 43 dead.

  • Reza / Getty

    A Trip to the Dead Sea

    The Dead Sea, on the border between Israel and Jordan, is the lowest and saltiest body of water in the world—and experts say it is on course to dry out by 2050.

  • Kin Cheung / AP

    The 'Coffin Homes' of Hong Kong

    AP photographer Kin Cheung spent time recently photographing some of the tiny subdivided housing units in Hong Kong, known as “coffin homes.”

Join the Discussion