Tamil Nadu Pollution control board has informed the
Madras high court that 95 per cent of the oil spill that occurred on November
18 in the Kamarajar Port Ennore has been removed. The board also informed the
court that the entire cleaning process would be completed within two days.
The board was responding to public interest litigation
on the oil the spill filed in the court and the judges turned down the petition
after hearing the version of the pollution control board
Two days back a tanker named MT Coral Stars berthed at
the Kamarajar Port in Ennore near Chennai encountered an accidental oil spill
in the early hours November 18th.Ever since the Indian Coast Guard
and Ennore Port have been taking oil spill response action to avoid
catastrophic consequences to the marine environment off Chennai. Although
maximum oil has been recovered, the remaining traces are being recovered and dispersed.
The spilled Furnace Fuel Oil (FFO)
becomes highly viscous chocolate coloured mousse owing to weathering in passage
of time and requires special equipment and techniques. The Coast Guard pressed
into action its specialised Pollution Control Vessel Samudra Paheredar along
with 05 other ships and 06 sorties by CG helicopter in the ongoing Pollution
Response operations to clean-up nearly two tonnes of thick FFO which was
accidentally spilled from Motor Tanker Coral Stars at MLT berth of Kamarajar
The specialised equipment onboard ICGS
Samudra Paheredar proved critical for recovering the thick oil mousse and
preventing it from reaching the shores. Near about five tonnes of viscous
mousse have been recovered using Weir, Disc, brush skimmers and manual mopping
using absorbents. Traces of oil effectively dispersed.
Whilst the ships were taking care of
seaward front, the aerial assessment provided the needed inputs about the
location and movement of the spilled oil and critically aided in designing and
implementing recovery/dispersal process. The Operations Centre of Coast Guard
Region (East), Chennai maintained 24 x 7 communication with the State Pollution
Control Board, Kamarajar Port and Shipping authorities for sustaining and
progressing the clean-up operation.
The dedicated and persistent efforts have resulted in
effective containment and successful recovery of the spilled oil.