Mauritius Plans To Scuttle Wrecked Giant Bulker Amidst Warnings

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  • Mauritius to scuttle the oil-spill tanker that ran aground off its shores.
  • Nagashiki Shipping, apologised for the incident and will support the crew and their families.
  • Two ship’s officers were arrested overnight on charges of endangering safe navigation.
  • Mauritius National Crisis Committee has planned to scuttle the ship’s remains at sea under recommendations from various groups of experts.
  • Environmental group Greenpeace said the action would lead to more pollution.

Mauritius plans to scuttle the Japanese-owned bulk carrier that ran aground off its shores and spilled oil over pristine waters and fragile coral reefs, reports Reuters.

Apology from the owner

Earlier on Wednesday owner of the MV Wakashio, Nagashiki Shipping, apologised for the incident and said it would support the crew and their families.

“We sincerely apologise for causing a great deal of inconvenience to everyone involved, including everyone in Mauritius, due to this grounding accident and oil spill,” it said in a statement.

Two of the ship’s officers were arrested overnight on charges of endangering safe navigation.

About the incident

The MV Wakashio struck a coral reef off the Indian Ocean island on July 25 and began spilling oil on Aug. 6, prompting the government to announce a state of environmental emergency.

For more information read our article [Watch] Emergency Declared As Stranded Bulker Spills Fuel Oil

Emergency crews removed most of the ship’s remaining oil before it split apart on Saturday.

For more information read our article [Watch] Mauritius Oil Tanker Splits Into Two After Spilling Oil

Scuttle the ship’s remains 

Mauritius National Crisis Committee said on Wednesday it planned to scuttle the ship’s remains at sea. The date is yet to be announced. 

To avoid further pollution

In a statement, the committee said it would do so in a way that would avoid further pollution or interfere with maritime routes.

Expert’s advice

It had taken in recommendations from various groups on how and where to sink the ship to conform with advice of French experts present on the island, it said.

Not a good idea

Environmental group Greenpeace said the action would lead to more pollution.

Happy Khambule of Greenpeace Africa said in a statement, “Sinking this vessel would risk biodiversity and contaminate the ocean with large quantities of heavy metal toxins, threatening other areas as well, notably the French island of La Réunion.”

Impact remains unknown

According to scientists the full impact of the spill is still unfolding but the damage could affect Mauritius and its tourism-dependent economy for decades. Removing the ship is likely to take months.

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Source: Reuters

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