Mauritius declares environmental emergency as wrecked ship begins spills oil

Stu Nettle
Swellnet Dispatch

On the 25th July, the MV Wakashio, a Japanese-owned bulk carrier operated by Mitsui OSK Lines, enroute from China via Singapore to Brazil ran aground in southern Mauritius.

Both the owners of the ship and Mautiian politicians assured residents that neccessary precautions were being taken to prevent an oil spill. However, two weeks after the ship ran aground, while waiting for tugs to arrive, the MV Wakashio began breaking up and spilling its 4,000 tonnes of oil.

A day after oil began leaking, Mauritius declared a state of "environmental emergency".

The ship ran aground near Pointe d'Esny, on the south-east coast of Mauritius, near a number of reefbreaks and on the barrier reef of a popular kite surfing lagoon. As it's on the windward coast the spilt oil is being blown onto the coastline.

"We apologise profusely and deeply for the great trouble we have caused," Akihiko Ono, executive vice-president of Mitsui OSK Lines said at a news conference in Tokyo on the weekend.

At least 1,000 tonnes of oil is estimated to have already leaked from the ship. 500 tonnes of oil have been salvaged from the ship, but there are still 2,500 tonnes remaining on the ship.

Japan will dispatch a six-person disaster relief team, on the request of the Mauritius Government, to help with removing the spilt oil, according to a statement by the Japanese Foreign Ministry on Sunday.

"We hope that this assistance will contribute to recovery of the environment of Mauritius and prevention of marine pollution," the statement said.

France was also sending specialist teams and equipment to Mauritius, once a French colony, to help deal with the spill.

Environmentalists fear the oil spill would endanger the marine ecology of Mautitius and its reefs and beaches.

Comments

greyhound's picture
greyhound's picture
greyhound commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 10:38am

Yep. A 6 person disaster relief team will have it fixed up in no time.. very sad, yet not surprising..

DudeSweetDudeSweet's picture
DudeSweetDudeSweet's picture
DudeSweetDudeSweet commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 10:47am

Now everyone will be wearing black shorts.

zenagain's picture
zenagain's picture
zenagain commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 10:54am

Tragic.

1173

Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 10:55am

Brutal ineptitude......

Dannon's picture
Dannon's picture
Dannon commented Tuesday, 11 Aug 2020 at 12:58pm

Yes Lanky, Dumb C#*ts.

fitzroy-21's picture
fitzroy-21's picture
fitzroy-21 commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 11:20am

How the fuck does this even happen?? In this day and age with the most advanced satellite navigation and electronics to aid, it is just astounding.

pineapp66's picture
pineapp66's picture
pineapp66 commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 6:41pm

Although owned by a Japanese company, this ship will be registered in a country with lax maritime safety standards - Flag of Convenience. A way to save money. As a worker at the largest port in Oz, I see the poor condition these vessels are in first hand. The Maritime Union of Australia has been banging on about this issue for years. It's not if it will happen on our coastline, it's when. Greed has a price. This is it.

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 6:53pm

Registered in Panama.

wiggy_piratej's picture
wiggy_piratej's picture
wiggy_piratej commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 7:08pm

well said mate, im a seafarer and we have been harping on about this for decades..... ticking time bombs them flag of conivience ships, relaxed training standards and certification......and whops we landed on the reef

NDC's picture
NDC's picture
NDC commented Tuesday, 11 Aug 2020 at 6:17am

Flag of convenience stuff going on for decades - my dad (navy guy) first explained it to me in the 80s

One of many negative aspects of globalisation - which on balance I believe serves us all - is areas like this where you get a regulatory race to the bottom. Tax havens are another example.

The best chance we’ve got to resolve problems like this is through bodies like the UN. Whilst not perfect we need them more than ever and the rise of popular identity politicians like trump is their biggest threat

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Tuesday, 11 Aug 2020 at 9:22am

Absolutely NDC. I bristle at every utterance from populists and their base about the UN. Soveriegnty also has its place, however, my intuition tells me the current class of politicians are weaponising it and trying to delegitimise the UN for their own ends.

 

Any movement to delegitimise the UN, or other global institutions designed to will have devastating effects.

Fatso's picture
Fatso's picture
Fatso commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 12:05pm

Fucking environmental terroism...nothing more nothing less. We should also be taking note of the rusting oil production ship sitting off our north west coast that Woodside offloaded to a smaller end-of-life resource specialist. Said company became insolvent following the purchase, and Woodside is now claiming legal immunity ('cause they'd sold the shitheap). Fuckwits

goofyfoot's picture
goofyfoot's picture
goofyfoot commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 12:20pm

6 people. Is that a joke?

regydogy's picture
regydogy's picture
regydogy commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 12:38pm

fucking japs , 6 fucking people , wtf . hows that going to fix it . are they takeing the piss or what . whale eating inbreads

Thegrowingtrend.com's picture
Thegrowingtrend.com's picture
Thegrowingtrend.com commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 1:35pm

harsh realities. sad day for the ocean.

Nicko

Nigeisblessed's picture
Nigeisblessed's picture
Nigeisblessed commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 2:06pm

Well at least they said sorry, that makes everything alright then - carry on as before the. Oh, and thanks for the 6 people two weeks late to be any use.

Bloody hell, there is just no words sometimes to describe the stupidity and lack of care that some parts of humanity insist on displaying.

groovie's picture
groovie's picture
groovie commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 2:37pm

And the BEAT goes on!!!

Mishad's picture
Mishad's picture
Mishad commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 4:43pm

The oil company needs to rally and throw money and resources to plug this spill and clean it up stat. Then prison for the Captain, senior crew, ship owners. They are responsible and should be treated with criminal negligence. How the F??K does a ship run aground in easily navigable seas. No excuses. Fucken prison. Make the next shipping company think twice before cutting corners. Pun not intended.

bipola's picture
bipola's picture
bipola commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 5:52pm

AGREE

views from the cockpit's picture
views from the cockpit's picture
views from the ... commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 6:21pm

Id like to see the friggin captain keel hauled for that disgraceful incompetence!!!
Should be international efforts to clean it up.

Was lucky enough to spend 6 days there on a work junket about 10 years ago.
On our lay day I was keen to check the Santosha left hander so teamed up with a couple of fellow attendees to drive over there.
From the top of the island I could see lines peeling and started frothing much to the amusement of these fellas.
As it turns out theres a surfshop directly opposite where I rented a board (it was good enough) and scored 3-4 ft peelers for 2 hours with less than a dozen out whilst the guys continued sightseeing.
To my amazement there were no hassling dudes- only tourists and a couple of "locals" I guess? Maybe it was lunchtime??
What a beautiful long, fast, smooth makeable reef break.
Would love to ride it @ 6ft, white shorts not-withstanding.

That oil spill is on the other side of the island where we also did some boat cruises across the beautiful Blue Bay.
Such a shame :-(((((

Westofthelake's picture
Westofthelake's picture
Westofthelake commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 6:43pm

What a total fck-up.

"He said it was the country’s first oil spill and perhaps no one expected the ship to break apart."

Looking at that pic above there seems to be a cracker of a crack. Design flaw?

https://www.thenational.ae/world/africa/mauritius-scrambles-to-counter-o...

Robwilliams's picture
Robwilliams's picture
Robwilliams commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 7:44pm

Total fuck up. I encourage all to support the investment and development of cleaner energies within your means, And make lifestyle changes where possible. Prevention has all ways been better than cure in regard to environmental damage in sensitive areas.

We must support and push the idea of change now and within the future. Wether our or generations to come benefit. Oil spills never end well and this is the darker side of the industries failure. Just another reason for science and industries to develop technology for a cleaner foot print. You don't have to be a greenie to see this. Support a cleaner future however you can. Expose the core problematic issues as ugly as they are and hope in the meantime it never happens near you. Sad day for Mauritius and the conscious global community.

spiggy topes's picture
spiggy topes's picture
spiggy topes commented Monday, 10 Aug 2020 at 10:51pm

Mitsui OSK will have a budget line for ship groundings and oil spills in the hundreds of millions of dollars. Six blokes on a junket wouldn't cost more than the data entry for this. It's a giant company that should be made to clean up and pay up for the decades it will take to restore that coast. This is a world-leading shipping technology company and there's a fair chance much of our iron ore and LNG leaves us on their ships. Japanese companies are big on pride so this one should be shamed into a rapid, thorough and ongoing clean up fast, with much compensation paid. If enough people care to email their corporate communications department they might get the message. Chief Environment Officer Toshiaki Tanaka and Chief Executive Officer Junichiro Ikeda. Only 155 people have viewed this youtube vid https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=peUlkUu6UXE out of Mauritius. Share it and drop a line to the Mitsui trumps. They've got pages and pages of environmental guff on their website, maybe someone at the company really believes it.

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Tuesday, 11 Aug 2020 at 9:11am

"Mauritius PM warns cracks appearing in oil tanker's hull as island prepares for environmental worst-case scenario"

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-08-11/mauritius-oil-spill-ship-tanker-c...

Bob Sacamano's picture
Bob Sacamano's picture
Bob Sacamano commented Tuesday, 11 Aug 2020 at 1:13pm

6 people a few weeks later! That's an insult. Between this and the continuing leaks from Fukushima Japan is really doing its part for the oceans. Criminals who should be treated as such.

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Wednesday, 12 Aug 2020 at 9:56am

Heartbreaking stuff.

Remigogo's picture
Remigogo's picture
Remigogo commented Wednesday, 12 Aug 2020 at 2:37pm

Faaark in 'ell...

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Sunday, 30 Aug 2020 at 7:05am
simba's picture
simba's picture
simba commented Sunday, 30 Aug 2020 at 7:27am

In this day and age you would think that the 'world' would have an emergency plan for such disasters and all pull together to fix the problem.......nothings changed...

simba