University of Vermont

Big Oil in the Niger Delta: Perspectives on African Oil

Wednesday, November 14, 2012, 6:00-7:00 PM

Precarious Energy

The James M. Jeffords Center's Institute for Environmental Diplomacy and Security, and the Vermont Council on World Affairs present a panel discussion on the controversy surrounding oil development in the Niger Delta, where issues of environmental justice raise questions about corporate responsibility and governance.  How can Nigeria pursue development while protecting its fragile delta ecosystem? What responsibility to international energy companies like Shell have to ensure sustainable development? 


  • Olav Ljøsne, Senior Manager of International Operations for Shell Oil Company.  Mr. Ljøsne has worked twenty years for Shell Oil in the Middle East, Europe, and most recently as Regional Communications Director Africa. Prior to Shell, he served as a diplomat at Norwegian Embassies in Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Iran, and with United Nations.  
  • Benjamin K. Sovacool, Visiting Associate Professor, Vermont Law School. Professor Sovacool, is the founding manager of the Energy Security and Justice Program at the Institute for Energy and the Environment, which investigates how to provide ethical access to energy services and minimize the injustice of current patterns of energy production and use.
  • Gregory Gause, Professor of Political Science, UVM. Professor Gause has written three books and several articles on international relations in the Persian Gulf with particular emphasis on the role of oil in Middle East development.

The public is invited to attend this panel on African Oil will be held on Wednesday, November 14, 2012 from 6:00-7:00 PM in the Williams Family Room, Dudley H. Davis Center. The event is free and open to the public, however, space is limited.  Please call 802-656-3161, or email to leave a message concerning your intention to attend.

Sponsored by the James M. Jeffords Center's Institute for Environmental Diplomacy and Security, and The Vermont Council on World Affairs.  

For more information go to, or call 802-656-3161.