Oil spill in Sundarbans

The >oil spill in the Sundarbans (International page, Dec.12) is easily the biggest disaster in any mangrove forest in the world. Previously there have been such spills in Indonesia, Panama, Nigeria, Australia and Puerto Rico, but which did not spread to a large area. That this spill will affect the livelihoods of those engaged in fishing and collecting honey and golpata from the forests and endangered species, is a given.

The long-term ecological damage will be in the form of oil sticking to the aerial roots of mangroves and the trees dying, not being able to breathe. Oil-coated leaves will affect wildlife that live off the leaves. Oil ingestion is guaranteed to cause internal organ damage. Endangered dolphins, otters, monitor lizards and microorganisms will gradually die. After an oil spill in Panama’s Bahia Las Minas, researchers observed the devastating effects on mangroves even five years later. One hopes that Bangladesh does not hesitate to ask for expertise in mitigating the ill-effects of the spill.

Rhys D’Cruz,


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Printable version | Oct 25, 2020 2:21:43 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/letters/oil-spill-in-sundarbans/article6686901.ece

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