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LUKOIL - Komi. Lies and loathing

Иван Иванов
Иван Иванов
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I must say: LUKOIL staff pleaded not guilty. Therefore, I won’t reveal a part of the factual evidence.

September 12, 2013, before noon in 200 meters from my workplace (place of crossing the old site access road of the petrol pipe "Pashnya - preliminary water removal unit Zapadnyy Tebuk", self-named pipeline, the petrol pipe "Zapadnyy Tebuk - preliminary water removal unit Nizhny Odes" oil and gas production department-1 - Central Processing Facility -1) I noticed a suspicious motion of equipment (shovel, crew change vehicle etc.). Later I was riding a bicycle during a lunch-hour and saw that something was dug up at a certain distance from the road, people outfitted in LUKOIL workwear were swarming, I could hear the hiss (either venting or gas welding), shovel was rolling next to me.

In the evening after work I visited a mysterious place (though of course I already knew what I’d find there).

Ditch with dimensions of about 3x8-10 m, 3 m deep, 30 cm of filling oil. The minimum amount of floating oil is probably 3x8x0.3 = 7.2 cube, not including oil soaked into the ground.

After mushroom picking I went to observe the spill site near forest. Warning tape appeared during my absence.

I inspected the place of transition across a small stream (it was dry this torrid summer). No oil yet.

On the Vuktylskaya road I see that very shovel, it is dragging some pipe along the road.

I often criticize and overrate my viewpoint. And we are often reproached that we accuse oilers of hiding oil spills before the expiry of the term of their reports to the state environmental authorities. And taking into account that the oil doesn’t go further yet, I decided to give LUKOIL a chance to prove in the right by themselves. I kept it quiet. I thought that one day will be enough to eliminate the oil spill and take away the oil (I fell for the media frenzy about the advanced environmental technologies in LUKOIL).

My mistake was that I misjudged the meaning of the oilers actions. I thought that it was a regular oil spill (environmental plank of Nizhny Odes is understated far below zero; such things don’t shock anyone).

On the weekend I didn’t visit the spill area.

Monday, September 16, work is in progress. I see a shovel and a car with a barrel near the oil ditch. Platform with pipes is driving off the spill area.

I don’t see any committee. I understand that something is wrong. The process has been lasting for a very long time. It should be fixed. I am looking for a person for drawing up act. I have a problem with this recently. My permanent companion T. D. Makarova is wrapped up in the management of her house, and the proposal to accuse LUKOIL of environmental pollution steadily frightens adult men (well, my circle of friends).

Arranged a meeting with Makarova on Wednesday.

Tuesday. September 17. All the same.

September 18, 2013, from the act:

Period of time from 6:47 p.m. to 6:57 p.m.

We, the deputy chairman of Save the Pechora Committee Makarova Tamara Dormidontovna and a member of Save the Pechora Committee Ivanov Ivan Stepanovich, carried on investigation of the forest range adjacent to the industrial zone of Nizhny Odes (position coordinates: 63°38′59.4″N         latitude and 54°52′00.21″E longitude)

Established that:

Approximately 200 meters east of the administration building of Connection Department №2 LLC "LUKOIL-Inform" there is a shovel near the left side of the old site access road. 60 meters to the north there are 4 new pipes in diameter of about 0.5 m; the pit with traces of the bucket teeth, half buried, 3x3 m in size, about 2.5 m deep. In the pit there is a black oily liquid with a smell of oil products (hereafter referred to as — FO — floating oil). In the adjoining territory the ground is dug up, there are small pools and stains of FO. 50 m to the west of the pit there is a small almost dry stream (no water flow due to lack of rain), over 10 m of FO pollution. From the stream to the pit there is a groove with FO 0.3 m deep, fallen trees (after-growth). From the road to the pit there is a large number of pipe scraps about 0.1 m in diameter.

Photos taken with two cameras: T.D. Makarova — Canon PC 1012 and I.S. Ivanov — Nikon D3100.

Photo by T. Makarova

According to Tamara Makarova (erroneously) the pipes that we have seen were new. So we made ​​an assumption that it was a case of replacing the emergency section of the pipe.

Tamara Dormidontovna reported to the Pechora environmental prosecutor's office.

Environmental engineer of LUKOIL G.V. Gulya phoned Makarova after lunch. Sniffed out.

It feels like LUKOIL staff frozen in confusion after prosecutor’s request. The work was suspended.

September 19

Motion resumed. Shovel exported pipes all day long. No equipment with oil contaminated ground and barrels. Buried, probably.

At the end of the working day oxygen tanks were taken in the bucket of shovel. It happened under the leadership of a man resembling the chief of oil and gas production department -1 Volkov (also known as a member of State Company Nizhny Odes). I understood that the consequences would be hidden, but the real concealment exceeded my expectations.

September 20

P.V. Antonov (deputy of environmental prosecutor) from Pechora and the commission of Sosnogorsk arrived (act of nature inspection will be later).

The representative of the LUKOIL-Komi at once tried to take the commission away from the spill area.

With the representative of forestry and navigator we determined that 50 m of spill area fall within the GP Nizhny Odes.

I can saw that everything was buried (they almost made a new stream course).

I really like this photo for some reason.

I heard the explanation of representative of LUKOIL-Komi. My first reaction — "I want to capture your face on video when you say this". If I'm not mistaken (at last year's act), that man is the chief of labor department of Industrial Safety and Environmental Chamber "LUKOIL-Ukhtaneftegaz" LCC "LUKOIL-Komi" Trusov (I checked out his fleece workwear). He doesn’t like my blog (why?), and he doesn’t want to be captured on video. Yeah, right.


I won’t retell all those bedtime stories that I've heard. The main point is: the ground is not ours, the pipe is not our, oil is not ours; the village is trying to set us up again.

Surroundings of Nizhny Odes are full of scrap metal which is picked up by everyone.

In the forest, about 20 meters from the active oil pipelines of LLC "LUKOIL-Komi" (Trusov doesn’t deny its belonging) the prosecutors find a large puddle of old oil on the surface of the water (of course it's not LUKOIL’s oil). I manage to sink into it (pants, sneakers, worsted socks 400 rubles cost, which served me truly in the Urals — I had to throw out everything). I ask, “Didn’t your inspectors notice the puddle?” The answer is, “It’s none of our business.” Also, as I understood, large-scale excavation and firing in close vicinity to their hazardous operations industrial facilities (oil and gas pipelines) are also none of their business. Well, they don’t know who and what was doing here.

I suggest that this refers to dismantling of the pipeline (which had a fountain last year).

Antonov decides to walk along the visible trail of a pipe.

Trusov seems to be tired to lie, so he leaves us. G. V. Gulya takes up the baton (this woman knows more than anyone about LUKOIL oil spills in the area of her ​​responsibility — Pashnya, Savinobor, Nizhny Odes, etc. — over the last years). Only imagine how hard it is to live with all this information. After 150 meters we find a pipe section that is not dismantled yet. The active oil pipelines are closer (4 meters) here, and they cross the Vuktylskaya road almost together.

On the other side of the road (where I saw shovel with a pipe) there are fresh trace of a shovel (apparently the pipe was pulled out here).

If my assumption is correct, the pipe should go to 4 GNSP (7 kilometers along the Vuktylskaya road). I suggest to take a ride along the road. Some part of the pipe may still be there or we may find traces of loading.


We go back, get into a car. Drive. Find the pipe in a couple of kilometers.

Galina Vasilievna flounders explaining where all these come from. Their or not their. And take it out on me:

“Who do you think you are? What are you trying to say? Do you know anything about supply pipelines? Why did you bring people here?”, “Better go and work on cemetery, or there won’t be a place for you”, “I can lift you and drop” (she is a strong woman), “Bear in the forest will bite you to death”, “Throw a cigarette, moron” (absolutely unmotivated).

My answer — "Calm down!"

But so much loathing at a time — it's too much and meaningless. Is my simple desire to breathe clean air and tread the ground is so unacceptable for LUKOIL?

Galina Vasilievna, in my opinion, you behaved foolishly. I want to reveal a secret I didn’t know anything before the commission. I was striking answers hit-or-miss and watching your reaction your temper outbursts were a sign that I'm on the right track. Thank you.

Antonov finds people in the forest. They say that all the equipment that worked here is hidden in the modular group pumping station (in 5 km). I jokingly suggest to take away Gulya’s phone — she is already calling someone in a hurry.

On the modular group pumping station there is only a hone with the residual oil contaminated ground. Further, there is a series of actions that allow me to suggest that LUKOIL-Komi can’t clear themselves.

We leave. The Commission goes on deposits to take over recultivated areas.

This is my tentative judgment:

LUKOIL-Komi illegally (approval procedure is quite complicated) dismantles the pipeline of oil and gas production department-1 CPF-1 DN500 — West Tebuk (as recorded in last year's act). I think that’s how we can explain that they don’t admit a relatively small spill of floating oil.

As for me, LUKOIL didn’t use the chance to prove themselves in the right. Well, my opinion remains constant: they lie, shit, hide and will continue doing it. No more negotiations and temporary gifts. Gentlemen of LUKOIL, if you still didn’t get the idea, I join the war that you wage against nature. And I am not on your side. 

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Комментарии (6)
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Владимир Иванович
19 ноя 2013 12:41

Ты бы Ваня, еще по коми написал. Судя по фотографиям, что-то интересное.

22 ноя 2013 17:40

Thanks for writing this in English! There is way too little information about oil spills and environmental impacts of oil operations in Russia! Keep up the good job!

22 ноя 2013 18:14

Thank you for good words. We'll try

22 ноя 2013 19:29

is it possible to get in touch directly with Ivan or some of you regarding oil companies activity in Komi?

22 ноя 2013 23:16

His email is [email protected] But i'm not sure in his english level. Make a copy to [email protected] and i will help to translate.

23 ноя 2013 01:03

Oh! At long last!

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