Chevron Corp. said it shut down about a quarter of its oil production in Nigeria after one of its pipelines in the Abiteye area of Delta State was breached.
Nigeria’s main militant group in the oil-rich Niger River delta said it destroyed “major” trunk lines feeding Chevron’s Escravos crude oil terminal.
Production of about 100,000 barrels a day was shut down to protect the environment, Chevron spokesman Scott Walker said Monday by e-mail from Houston. The incident is being investigated, he said.
Chevron, based in San Ramon, Calif., is the second-largest U.S. oil company. Its daily production in Nigeria last year averaged 376,000 barrels of crude oil, 181 million cubic feet of gas and 16,000 barrels of petroleum gas, according to data provided by Walker.
Nigeria is the fifth-biggest source of oil imports for the U.S.
Before the latest attacks, Nigeria’s oil production had fallen to less than half its capacity of 3.2 million barrels a day, Petroleum Minister of State Odein Ajumogobia said last week. Government troops and rebels claiming to fight for the delta’s poor have fought daily battles since May 13 in the southern region that accounts for nearly all of Nigeria’s oil.
Armed militants in the region blew up the Chevron pipeline at Abiteye, according to a military spokesman.