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  • Tuesday, 15 April 2014

    Oil spillage in Richards bay habour

    Fantasy and Luxury visited the Naval island in Richards bay, South
    Africa as it was reported that a leakage 1000 litres ( 264 gallons )
    of oil had leaked to the Richards bay habour which lead the residents
    Bayanda sbu Mthwetwa and Nhlakanipho Gumede and around the beach to
    be disappointed and the Environmentalists claim careless attitudes
    behind oil pipeline spill in Richards Bay
    that reportedly killed fish, polluted
    environment


    ENVIRONMENTALISTS say poor maintenance
    and careless attitudes led to an oil pipeline
    spill in Richards Bay, KwaZulu-Natal, that
    reportedly killed fish and polluted the
    environment.
    A huge clean-up operation has been under
    way since Monday morning. The leak from
    a 2.5km( 1.55 miles ) pipeline that had not been used for
    two years was first detected in Richards
    Bay harbour on Sunday night.
    Petroleum company Engen, which owns the
    pipeline, said about 1,000 litres of fuel oil
    leaked from a corroded pipe into the
    harbour. But environmentalist are sceptical
    about this figure and believe the damage
    could be more severe.
    Engen spokeswoman Bulelwa Payi
    conceded that an investigation now under
    way would determine the full extent of the
    damage. "We have called in specialist oil-
    spill response teams to help us solve the
    problem," she said.
    Some of these experts were scouring the
    harbour for oil and others were using
    skimmers to drain oil from the water.
    The KwaZulu-Natal department of
    agriculture and environmental affairs and
    Transnet both said they were monitoring
    the clean-up programme and investigation.
    Department spokesman Jeffrey Zikhali said
    initial investigations revealed that some oil
    was left inside the suspended pipeline.
    "At this stage it's very difficult to ascertain
    exactly how much damage has been
    caused as this is just a preliminary report
    that we have conducted," he said. "But our
    environmental specialists are on the scene
    and we should be getting an update from
    them daily on how much damage has been
    caused."
    Desmond D'sa, of the South Durban
    Community Environmental Alliance, said he
    had no doubt that Engen's alleged lack of
    care caused this accident.
    "I think it is about time that the
    government hold these companies
    accountable for the damage they are
    causing to the environment," he said.
    Megan Lewis, of nonprofit environmental
    organisation groundWork South Africa,
    echoed these sentiments, adding that she
    heard that some fish and other estuary
    creatures died due to the spill.
    Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife CE Bandile Mkhize
    said the organisation had also sent a team
    of experts to ascertain the extent of the
    damage.

    Sifiso Nkwanyana

    Author & Editor

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