At the beginning of 2022, the French oil company Total signed an agreement with the governments of Tanzania and Uganda and the Chinese state company CNOOC to export and exploit oil through the world's largest heated pipeline, the EACOP. Total is the major EACOP shareholder with 62% and also in Tilenga fields, where 82% of oil will be drilled inside the Murchison Falls National Park in Uganda, where the last Rothschild giraffes populations live and this story began. The 1443 kilometres pipeline starts at Kabaale, crossing the Bugoma and Wambabya tropical forests, home to endangered chimpanzee communities and ends at the Tanga Coelacanth Marine Park, where African coral reefs are endangered by sea temperature rise due to climate change and mangrove forests will be decimated to build a new terminal for crude export.
EACOP has been strongly confronted by local activists, environmental organizations and even the European Parliament, which passed a resolution condemning the project for its climate impact and human rights violations. The project is estimated will contribute 34 million tons of CO2 per year, more than double than Tanzania and Uganda's current emissions combined. In addition, Tilenga site borders the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), where new oil blocks will be authorized, opening up the large Central African reserves to the world market.
At the same time, both Uganda and Tanzania defend their right to develop their own energy resources to be self-sufficient, as more than half of their population doesn't have access to electricity, criticizing European nations for causing the climate change they suffer.
This story portrays the ecosystems that are in danger in Uganda and Tanzania, as well as the communities that have suffered human rights violations by EACOP subcontractors in a world where global warming is a reality and increasing.