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Sinking Venezuelan oil tanker could dump 80 million gallons of oil into the sea

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oil tanker

Posted: Monday, October 19, 2020. 6:05 pm CST.

By BBN Staff: The FSO Nabarima, an oil tanker currently in the Gulf of Paria, off the coast of Venezuela, is taking on water and could possibly dump 80 million gallons of oil into the sea, according to Newsweek.

The vessel has reportedly been idle off the coast of Venezuela since 2019, when the United States government place sanctions on Venezuela’s state-owned oil company PDVSA, causing the partner company Petrosucre to freeze its operations and leaving the  Nabarima with 1.3 million barrels (80 million gallons) of crude oil on board.

Pictures of the  Nabarima leaning to one side, surfaced last week, sparking concerns a possible spill could occur, which would destroy delicate ecosystems and devastate the fishing industry within the region.

On Friday the U.S. Embassy in Trinidad and Tobago issued a statement calling for “immediate actions” to prevent the potential disaster, stressing that the  United States’ Venezuela sanctions program is not designed to target activities addressing safety, environmental, or humanitarian concerns.

“We strongly support immediate actions to bring the Nabarima up to international safety standards and avoid possible environmental harm, which could negatively impact not only the Venezuelan people but also those in nearby countries. PDVSA has a responsibility to take action to avoid an environmental disaster in Venezuelan waters,” the Embassy said.  

Photos had surfaced today suggesting that the vessel had stabilized and the situation had improved; however, the conservation group Fishermen and Friends of the Sea (FFOS) later confirmed that the images were fake and the situation is still dire.

 
 

 

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