WAHALA - PhMuseum


Robin Hinsch


Wahala, 2019

The Work arouses around the topics of untamed economic growth and ecological perspectives.

„A fossil fuel is a fuel formed by natural processes, such as anaerobic decomposition of buried dead organisms, containing energy originating in ancient photosynthesis.Such organisms and their resulting fossil fuels typically have an age of millions of years, and sometimes more than 650 million years.Fossil fuels contain high percentages of carbon and include petroleum, coal, and natural gas.“

The photographs were taken in Nigeria and India, more precisely in the Niger Delta and the Region of Dhanbad in Jharkhand, in 2019.

The so called „Coal Belt of Jharkhand“ occupies the rst position in coal reserves (about 32% of India), second position in iron ore reserves (25.07% of India), third position in copper ore reserve (18.48% of India), seventh position in bauxite reserve and is the sole producer of pri- me coking coal. The other important minerals available in signi cant quantities are limestone, dolomite, manganese, mica, china clay, graphi- te, re clay, coal bed methane, uranium, phosphorite, apatite, quartz, gold, feldspar and pyroxenite.

However, richness in mineral resources has not translated into development for the state. According to Jharkhand government, the state has 39.1% people below the poverty line (BPL) as against the national rates of 29.8%.

Covering 70,000 sq km (27,000 sq miles) of wetlands, the Niger delta was formed primarily by sediment deposition. It is home to more than 30 million people and 40 different ethnic groups, making up 7.5% of Nigeria’s total land mass. It used to be an incredibly rich ecosystem that contained one of the highest concentrations of biodiversity on the planet before the oil industry moved to the area. The Nigerian petroleum resources department estimated 1.89m barrels were spilled into the Niger delta between 1976 and 1996. A United Nations development pro- gramme report states there have been a total of 6,817 spills between 1976 and 2001, which account for a loss of 3m barrels of oil.

So far, no real action has been taken by the authorities and oil companies to clean up and renaturalise the delta, and oil spills are still very common. Half of them are caused by pipeline and tanker accidents, while other causes include sabotage (28%) and oil production operations (21%), with 1% of the spills being accounted for by inadequate production equipment. Another issue in the Niger delta is natural gas aring. Nigeria ares more natural gas associated with oil extraction than any other country, with estimates suggesting that about 70% of associated gas produced in the country is wasted through aring, the equivalent of 25% of the UK total natural gas consumption.

The work consists of 52 color photographs.

The work was supported by the Kulturbehörde für Kunst und Medien of the Hansestadt Hamburg as part of the Program „India Week 2019. The work was exhibited at Kampnagel Hamburg and at Wendenstrasse 45 Gallery. Furthermore the work has been published in the british The Guardian and the german Futur2.

The work was also generously supported by Fyneface Dumnamene Fyneface.

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