Oil spill mop-up underway in Seychelles
An oil spill of unknown origin has affected the north-eastern coastline of the main Seychelles island of Mahe. The Seychelles Ministry of Environment is asking the public for any information pertaining to the incident. (Ministry of Environment and Energy)
The Ministry of Environment is investigating the cause of an oil spill which occurred in the sea around Ile Perseverance, a reclaimed island in the north of Mahé.
The oil slick is now spreading further south on the east coast of the island but as yet it is still unknown exactly what caused the spillage. The affected areas surround the industrial and commercial hub of the island and not near any beaches frequented by holidaymakers.
According to a press release from the Seychelles Ministry of Environment, the oil spill was observed floating in the sea on Monday 19 January, after which representatives of the ministry were "sent to evaluate the situation”.
When contacted by SNA, André Freminot, the chief officer dealing with the mop-up operation said in a phone interview that the slick had now moved southwards towards the industrial zone of Providence and “pushed by the force of the wind, the oil spill could end up in the south of Mahé towards the district of Cascade”.
|Rocks surrounding the affected coastline are now black with oil (Ministry of Environment and Energy) Photo License: CC-BY|
Freminot said that by Tuesday the oil spill had affected the region around Eden Island, a residential marina development on reclaimed land on the east coast of Mahé.
Clean-up crews intensified their efforts this afternoon in an attempt to contain the oil and prevent it from affecting other coastal areas.
|Precious mangroves surrounding the lagoon around the reclaimed islands have been affected by the spillage (Ministry of Environment and Energy) Photo License: CC-BY|
“As soon it’s high tide, we will try, with the help of the Seychelles coast guard, to contain the spill using buoys, and then spread sawdust which will absorb the oil,” Freminot told SNA.
In the meantime, the Seychelles Ministry of Environment and Energy has requested members of the public to contact the Greenline on (+248 272 2111) if they have any information that will assist them in their investigation into the cause of the incident.
|Not a pretty sight - a slick washes up on the sand (Ministry of Environment and Energy) Photo License: CC-BY|