Uganda - oil exploration: limiting our environmental footprint
Forests and Climate - Committed to a beneficial environment for humans
Tom Okello, Director of Murchison Falls National Park in Uganda, explains how Total is working to reconcile oil exploration, the environment and tourism on the ground.
Uganda’s development is reliant on exploiting its oil resources, amongst other things. But it cannot be to the detriment of tourism and the environment. As the government agency in charge of park conservation, we believe, on the contrary, that all three activities can exist alongside each other in harmony. It was with this in mind that the collaboration with Total began. We had issued very strict rules on preserving biodiversity and reducing the environmental impact of oil exploration as far as possible, and the Group adhered to them scrupulously thanks to its cableless technology*.
* Now working onshore in Africa for the first time, Total has carried out a seismic survey in Uganda using a cableless technology in response to the sensitivity of the site. By doing away with kilometers of cables, this innovative technology limits the impact of exploration on wildlife and the environment.
Cableless technology and a dedicated team of experts
Total put together a team of specialists in animal and plant biology, which worked throughout the operation to list sensitive areas, evaluate impacts and correct them. The team provided assistance to the Uganda Wildlife Authority in combating poaching by removing traps designed to capture animals.
Finally, an in-depth study of biodiversity (an inventory of flora and fauna and species classed as vulnerable, in danger or at risk of extinction) the first of its kind carried out in the park was conducted jointly by the Group and the park authorities.
With no cables and protection for biodiversity, oil exploration is reducing its environmental footprint.