OVER 600 TONS OF LEAKED OIL EXPECTED TO RUIN HERITAGE-LISTED SOLOMON ISLANDS REEF | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


OVER 600 TONS OF LEAKED OIL EXPECTED TO RUIN HERITAGE-LISTED SOLOMON ISLANDS REEF

A terrifying environmental calamity has engulfed the Solomon Islands after a bulk carrier ran aground in last month’s cyclone Oma, threatening the future of a sensitive UNESCO World Heritage site.

The government of the small island nation has demanded urgent assistance in controlling the spill, which has already leaked over 80 tons of oil into the sea and surrounding shoreline and continues to gush into the nearby coral reef, causing a devastating impact on the environmentally sensitive region.

On February 5, the Hong Kong-flagged Solomon Trader, built in 1994, was loading bauxite from a mine on Rennell Island before the cyclone sank the ship onto a coral reef.

Over 660 tons of oil remain on board the leaking vessel along with the ship’s full load of bauxite, the key ore used to make aluminum. The ship was chartered with Indonesian company Bintan Mining Solomon Islands Limited, but its ownership remains unclear.

Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has expressed that it was “profoundly disappointed” by the slow response to the unfolding catastrophe, according to the Associated Press.

The spill also threatens to eventually spread to East Rennell, a UNESCO World Heritage site and the largest raised coral atoll in the world. UNESCO officials had called the site “a true natural laboratory” for scientific study – and one which faces danger due to logging and overfishing in the area. The UNESCO World Heritage Centre is working with Solomon authorities in hopes of assisting in damage control.

A source with close knowledge of the incident told The Guardian:

“Once it hits rock the heavy fuel oil is effectively like a bitumen-like substance and has to be removed by hand.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Cyclones are horrible things.

But that being said, why did the captain of the ship not check local weather reports, indicating this was coming?!? And what pushed him to continue the journey, with a ship that was 25 years old, and heaven only knows what its condition was, before the journey began.

This looks to me like a reckless run for profits, even facing the catastrophe that both the owner of the ship, and its captain, almost absolutely, had to know.

Right now, the captain, the chartering company, and the owner need to be arrested, and perp walked to the scene of the damage, tried, and convicted by a jury of their peers, and sentenced to hard jail time, and that the chartering and owners of this ship be liable for any and all damages to the Solomon islands, and must pay restitution.

Here are some images of the damage the spill has caused:

Solomon Trader’s Bunker Spill Continues Without Containment

Comments

SHARE THIS ARTICLE WITH YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA