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Thursday, March 31, 2016

March 31, 2016

 

For Immediate Release

 

 

 

Manolis L Technical Assessment Must be Followed by Funding for a Permanent Solution

 

 

 

Barry Petten, Environment Critic for the Official Opposition, said while he welcomes the federal commitment of $6 million in this year’s budget to finance a “technical assessment” of the Manolis L, that assessment must be followed by funding for a permanent solution to protect the local environment.

 

 

 

“People living around Change Islands and Notre Dame Bay are very concerned that another storm or natural erosion will cause bigger cracks in the hull and let a significant volume of oil to escape into the local environment. That could be disastrous, and people have every right to be concerned,” said Petten.

 

 

 

The Manolis L sank in 1985 near Change Islands in Notre Dame Bay. According to the Department of Fisheries and Oceans: “The vessel lies in approximately 82 metres of water and is believed to contain up to 462 tons of fuel and 60 tons of diesel. Over the next 28 years, there were no reports of oil pollution at the site until an intense storm system in the area generated strong sub-surface ocean currents. On March 31, 2013, the local Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) Environmental Response unit received reports of oil on the water. Their investigation discovered two cracks in the hull of the ship, one 22” and one 12”, in close proximity to each other, and each leaking a small quantity of oil.

 

 

 

“It is important to act quickly to find a permanent solution, rather than have to deal with the aftermath of an environmental catastrophe. It would be irresponsible to wait for such a catastrophe to happen when the warning signs are clear for all to see,” said Petten.

 

-30-

 

 

 

Media Contact:

 

Heather MacLean,

 

Director of Communications,

 

Office of the Official Opposition

 

(709) 729 6105, heathermaclean@gov.nl.ca

 

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