state in Nigeria

Bayelsa State is in South South Nigeria. It was created in 1996 and was created from the popular Rivers State. The capital city is Yenagoa. According to the 2006 population census conducted in Nigeria, Bayelsa State recorded a total population count of over 1.7 million count ranking at the time 35th of the 36 states.


Map of Bayelsa State

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Smoke from oil flare, Nembe Creek

Bayelsa state's population is predominantly Ijaw, with the Ijaw languages being widely spoken. Isoko and Urhobo are also spoken within their ancestral towns in the state. It is the ancestral home of the Isoko people and the Urhobo people in the Sagbama local government area.

As a state in the oil-rich Niger Delta the Bayelsa State's economy is dominated by the petroleum industry. The state is the site of Oloibiri Oilfield, where oil was first discovered in Nigeria, and as of 2015 was estimated to produce 30-40% of the country's oil. The state nicknamed “Glory of all Lands” has the largest gas reservoir (18 trillion cubic feet) in Nigeria. Though being the site of one of the largest crude oil and natural gas deposits in the country contributes to local economic development, the state remains plagued by rampant poverty as well as pollution stemming from oil spills.

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