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No contingency plan in place off Chennai Coast in case of recurrence of Oil Spill

There is no contingency plan in place in case of a recurrence of the oil spill that occurred at Ennore Port last April when two ships collided resulting in a massive oil spill extending up to entire Chennai coast from Ennore to Mahabalipuram.

Environmentalists put across the idea for a comprehensive plan which would take off immediately after the spill involving various state agencies including the Tamil Nadu government, Indian coast guards, Pollution control agencies of both central and state government. The proposal was mooted soon after the cleaning exercise was completed at a cost of over Rs three hundred crores.

Disclosing this at a meeting got up by the Karaikal Port and the Institute of Chartered Ship Brokers Capt Neil J Nair said it took the various government agencies nearly four months clean up the entire area.

Since there was no plan in place it took nearly two weeks for the various governmental agencies to put their act together and by that time the spill has spread to a vast area extending to Mahabalipuram from the Ennore coast.

He said as soon the cleaning operations were completed, he floated a suggestion for a contingency plan in case of recurrence of the spill. The officials of government agencies nodded their heads but no follow up action has been taken for the last several months. There is no contingency plan in case of a spill as of now.

Mr Nair was speaking about how ports should equip themselves with adequate insurance cover to protect their interests. His lecture is part of the series arranged by the Karaikal port as part of the knowledge dissemination exercise for various port users.

Mr Carthick Reddy, Senior Vice President, Business Development, Karaikal Port said coastal cargo including iron ore and clinkers have picked up in the port during the past few months.

The port is also installing an offshore LNG facility to meet the power requirements of the industry in the area. The port caters to requirement of the industries in Central Tamil Nadu.

We are more than a port Mr Reddy said adding that they own vast stretch of land adjoining the port which could be used by the manufacturing industry. The port has an excellent road and rail connectivity covering entire southern parts of the country.


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