Sunday 21 July, 2019

FFOS reiterates call for transparency in Petrotrin oil spill case

The Fishermen and Friends of the Sea (FFOS) is once again criticizing the Government over its handling of the latest Petrotrin oil spill which occurred on April 23, 2017.

In a statement, FFOS President Gary Aboud noted that Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley and the entire Government are too silent on the matter.

Aboud said the Yucatan Times of Mexico reported that hydrocarbon “oil residues were found on the Riviera Maya’s shores”  and are “affecting some Quintana Roo municipalities, such as Solidaridad and Tulum” as a consequence of the petroleum spill that occurred in Trinidad some 79 days before.  

According to the Yucatan Times Report, Mexican officials have reported that the origin of the oil along the Punta Maroma to the Mayakoba Hotel, is linked to the Petrotrin’s Tank 70 rupture at the Point-a-Pierre Refinery in April earlier this year. 

The FFOS head raised concerns as to why Mexico was not alerted to be on the lookout for this oil before it washed onto their shores. He also questioned whether oceanic currents can carry this oil to United States shorelines and if the US Embassy has been alerted about this possibility. 

Aboud reiterated his called for greater transparency in dealing with the oil spill and raised concerns as to why Petrotrin has not been fined for this “avoidable disaster of their own making.”

The FFOS President further insinuated that Energy and Energy Affairs Minister Franklin Khan was telling untruths when he revealed the amount of oil which leaked out of the Tank following the oil spill.

“Dr Rowley can 300 Barrels of oil contaminate the coastal areas of Venezuela, Bonaire, Curacao and all the way to Mexico? Why is your Minister not sharing the inventory report of the volume of oil contained in Tank 70 immediately before and immediately after this massive rupture? Did he tell the truth when he stated in Parliament that only 300 barrels escaped?”

The Energy Sub-Committee of the Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley, met to review the completed report on the operations of State-owned Petrotrin for the second time.

The Petrotrin Report was expected to go before the Cabinet for consideration yesterday for its decision on the way forward for the State-owned company.

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