This story is part of
Chennai oil spill

Central Pollution Control Board assessing oil spill

Environment Ministry likely to present a status report soon on the damage done

February 05, 2017 01:39 am | Updated 01:40 am IST - NEW DELHI:

Volunteers trying to clean up the sludge that washed ashore in Chennai.

Volunteers trying to clean up the sludge that washed ashore in Chennai.

The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) is analysing samples from the oil spill resulting from a collision between two ships off the coast of Tamil Nadu on Tuesday. Clean-up operations are being coordinated by the Coast Guard and involve several disparate organisations; however the Union Environment Ministry is expected to present a status report on the damage done by Wednesday.

“A team from the Bengaluru office is analysing samples,” S.P. Singh, Chairman, CPCB told The Hindu. “The Ministry of Defence is in charge of the oil spill management plan and it’s being coordinated by the Coast Guard. Assessment of any long term environmental damage is being done by the National Institute of Ocean Technology (Chennai) and the Environment Ministry.” Mr. Singh did not specify when these assessments would be complete. Preliminary assessments said several species of fish and turtle are believed to have been killed because of the spill.

The Hyderabad-based Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services has estimated that about 20 tonnes of oil may have leaked when the vessels, M.T. BW Maple and M.T. Dawn Kanchipuram , collided at 3.45 a.m. on January 28 outside the Kamarajar Port.

About 43 kms of the Tamil Nadu coastline may have been affected, the agency added.

The M.T. Dawn Kanchipuram , was carrying 32,813 tonnes of oil as cargo, though in a statement, Kamarajar Port authorities said it was engine oil and not cargo oil, that had leaked.

About 2,000 persons are involved in the clean up operations and 54 tonnes of sludge (mixture of oil, water, ocean material etc) was removed till February 2, according to the Press Information Bureau.

“Over 90% of the work has been completed and most of the residual work is expected to be over in a couple of days,” it said.

Top News Today

Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.