New Zealand PM calls for inquiry after oil spill
Monday 10 October 2011
New Zealand's Prime Minister yesterday demanded an inquiry to find out why a stranded ship threatening to spill oil on to the country's pristine coastline ploughed on to a reef in calm waters.
Marine crews were yesterday set to begin an operation to extract oil from the Liberia-flagged container ship Rena that has been leaking fuel since it ran aground on Wednesday.
Heavy swells and gale-force winds are forecast for the area from today. The ship has about 1,700 metric tons of fuel on board, according to Maritime New Zealand, the agency responsible for shipping in the region. The agency believes that so far, up to 30 tons have leaked into the Bay of Plenty, a spot noted for its fishing, diving and surfing.
Prime Minister John Key, who visited the area yesterday, said: "This is a ship that has plowed into a well-documented reef in calm waters in the middle of the night at 17 knots. So, somebody needs to tell us why that's happened."
In a statement, the owners of the ship, Greece-based Costamare Inc, said they are "cooperating fully with local authorities" and are making every effort to "control and minimise the environmental consequences of this incident". The company did not offer any explanation.
So far, eight sea birds – six little blue penguins and two shags – have been rescued from an oil slick that extends about three miles from the boat.
Environmental agency Greenpeace denounced what it claims is a slow response. "This is an unfortunate illustration of just how difficult it is to deal with oil spills at sea," said Greenpeace spokesman Steve Abel. "Even a slow, and relatively accessible oil spill like this one has clearly stretched New Zealand's response capability." AP
- 1 JK Rowling horrified by Harry Potter actor Matthew Lewis's raunchy photoshoot
- 2 As a white man, I'm surprised more women aren't tweeting the hashtag #KillAllWhiteMen
- 3 Saudi Arabia 'seeking to head United Nations Human Rights Council'
- 4 Georgia Army veteran arrested for breaking window to save dog has charges dropped
- 5 New Zealand 'the best country to work as a prostitute', says sex worker advocacy group
JK Rowling horrified by Harry Potter actor Matthew Lewis's raunchy photoshoot
Evany José Metzker dead: Decapitated body of Brazilian journalist and blogger investigating child prostitution ring found
Georgia Army veteran arrested for breaking window to save dog has charges dropped
Saudi Arabia 'seeking to head United Nations Human Rights Council'
The ten most unequal developed countries in the world
Scotland may have to leave the EU even if it votes to stay in, David Cameron confirms
Report finds that Britain's wages are the most unequal in Europe
As a white man, I'm surprised more women aren't tweeting the hashtag #KillAllWhiteMen
Almost a third of school pupils believe 'Muslims are taking over our country', study claims
Labour leadership: Battle lines are drawn as members battle over party's ideology at first hustings of the contest
Gay marriage 'Bert and Ernie' cake bakery found guilty of discrimination in Northern Ireland
£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...
£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...
£25000 - £30000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Graduate UI Application Developer - ...