Oil Spill Clean-up Operations Underway in Chaguaramas by Ministry of Energy

Contractors conducting clean-up operations in Chaguaramas waters

October 20, 2017: The Ministry of Energy and Energy Industries (MEEI) has responded to the oil spill that affected the Chaguaramas Peninsula that was first reported on Sunday October 15, 2017.

The MEEI conducted an initial aerial survey at about 1100 hrs on Sunday 15 October 2017 in order to identify the source of the spill that is still unknown at this time. The Institute of Marine Affairs (IMA) and Environmental Management Authority EMA are currently conducting vessel surveys. The IMA have been collecting sample from suspected vessels to conduct oil spill fingerprinting to determine the source of the spill.

The MEEI in light of the fact that the responsible party was and still is undetermined has taken charge of the clean-up operation. As such, ten clean-up vessels, various booms and 60 first responders are currently on-site in locations impacted including Williams Bay, Welcome Bay (Anchorage area), Harts Cut, Crews Inn, Tetron and Scotland Bay. These activities will continue at these and other affected locations as needed with the involvement and assistance of personnel from the Chaguaramas Development Authority (CDA) and other agencies already participating in the clean-up exercise.

In addition to clean-up activities and continued efforts towards identification of the source, the MEEI will continue management of the spill via tracking its movement and trajectory by daily aerial and marine surveys. These surveys have to date indicated the movement of the spill mainly along the Chaguaramas peninsula from Williams Bay to Scotland Bay. An aerial survey conducted today (October 19) showed that there was no movement of the spill to Venezuelan waters. There is also no evidence of additional oil.

Preliminary findings suggest that the type of oil spilled was Bilge oil. Bilge oil is the waste fluids that are collected on a ship for subsequent disposal at an appropriate facility.

Daily monitoring and reporting on oil spill response efforts will continue in accordance with established protocols and the public will be advised on any further developments.

 

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For more information contact:

Corporate Communications Unit
Ministry of Energy and Energy Industries
info@energy.gov.tt
225-4334

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