CARIBBEAN: An oil spill devastates Trinidad and Tobago


An oil spill is currently affecting the archipelago of Trinidad and Tobago. Since February 7, thousands of liters of oil have spilled into the sea caused by a boat with an unidentified flag.

Authorities estimate that there are at least 15 km of coastline that have been contaminated. An ecological and economic disaster, for which those responsible cannot be identified at this stage.

Trinidad and Tobago is facing an emergency due to a mysterious capsized cargo ship leaking oil off its southwest coast. The vessel, visually identified as the "Gulfstream", does not match international ship records.

Efforts to identify the ship's owners and registration are hampered by the ongoing oil spill. The ship, whose length is estimated at 330 feet (around 100 meters, editor's note), was probably transporting wood and sand. Divers found no signs of life on board, suggesting the ship was abandoned. The oil spill gave rise to a large clean-up effort involving various government agencies and the Coast Guard. Protective measures such as the deployment of booms are being implemented to contain thousands of liters of oil spilling into Caribbean waters, threatening not only the island's valuable marine ecosystems  but also the livelihoods of many of its small businesses.

Faced with this ecological and economic catastrophe, the government has declared a state of national emergency. _AF


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