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Oil pipeline from Uganda to Tanzania

Total promotes a 200,000 barrels per day, 1445 km pipeline from Lake Albert in Uganda to Tanga in Tanzania, for oil exports. Opposition for human rights (displacement of populations) and environment.


Tanzania and Uganda signed a $3.5 billion deal to build an oil pipeline on September 13 – sparking a wave of outcry from environmental groups. There are basically two projects: to exploit oil around Lake Albert in Uganda (419 wells, 1.7 bilion barrels) in a new oil extraction frontier, and to ship it through a 1,445 km pipeline to the coast in Tanzania. (6).

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Basic Data
Name of conflict:Oil pipeline from Uganda to Tanzania
State or province:Uganda to Tanga in Tanzania
Location of conflict:From Hoima near Lake Albert in Uganda to the port of Tanga in Tanzania
Accuracy of locationMEDIUM (Regional level)
Source of Conflict
Type of conflict. 1st level:Fossil Fuels and Climate Justice/Energy
Type of conflict. 2nd level:Oil and gas exploration and extraction
Transport infrastructure networks (roads, railways, hydroways, canals and pipelines)
Specific commodities:Crude oil
Project Details and Actors
Project details

Uganda and Tanzania have signed a deal to build East Africa’s first major oil pipeline. It comes just two days after Kampala signed a host government agreement with French oil giant Total.

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Level of Investment:3,500,000,000
Affected Population:50,000
Start of the conflict:2020
Company names or state enterprises:Total S.A. (Total) from France
Tullow Oil Plc from United Kingdom
China National Offshore Oil Corporation, or CNOOC Group (CNOOC) from China
Relevant government actors:President of Uganda
President of Tanzania
Environmental justice organizations (and other supporters) and their websites, if available:Survie
Friends of the Earth (France)
Ugandan associations Afigeo, Cred, Nape and Navoda
Conflict & Mobilization
IntensityLOW (some local organising)
Reaction stagePREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)
Groups mobilizing:International ejos
Local ejos
Social movements
Fisher people
Forms of mobilization:Creation of alternative reports/knowledge
Development of a network/collective action
Involvement of national and international NGOs
Lawsuits, court cases, judicial activism
Media based activism/alternative media
Official complaint letters and petitions
Public campaigns
Environmental ImpactsPotential: Air pollution, Fires, Global warming, Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Oil spills, Deforestation and loss of vegetation cover, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality, Groundwater pollution or depletion, Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity)
Health ImpactsPotential: Exposure to unknown or uncertain complex risks (radiation, etc…)
Socio-economical ImpactsVisible: Displacement
Potential: Violations of human rights, Land dispossession, Loss of livelihood, Specific impacts on women, Loss of landscape/sense of place
Project StatusProposed (exploration phase)
Conflict outcome / response:Compensation
Court decision (undecided)
Do you consider this an environmental justice success? Was environmental justice served?:Not Sure
Briefly explain:It is not yet certain that the pipeline will be built
Sources & Materials
Links to general newspaper articles, blogs or other websites

(1) Uganda and Tanzania sign $3.5bn oil pipeline deal.13 September 2020.
[click to view]

(3) The Africa Report. Uganda and Tanzania to build East Africa’s first major oil pipeline. By Morris Kiruga. Monday, 14 September 2020

(2) Uganda and Tanzania oil pipeline threatens ‘disastrous’ environmental consequences. 17 Sept. 2020. France 24.
[click to view]

(4) Pétrole : le projet de Total en Tanzanie et en Ouganda menacerait 12.000 familles et l’environnement 10 Sept.2020, Kevin Comte.
[click to view]

(5) Matt Smith. 13 Oct. 2020. Uganda oil start date in doubt despite crucial agreements. Petroleum Economist.
[click to view]

Related media links to videos, campaigns, social network

(6) Des méga-projets pétroliers de Total menacent plus de 16 000 familles et une réserve naturelle unique en Afrique. La Releve et La Peste.
[click to view]

(7) FIDH. Oxfam. New community-based human rights impact assessments expose the major risks of oil development around Lake Albert and “down the line”in Uganda and Tanzania.
[click to view]

Meta information
Last update16/10/2020
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