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Mauritius Oil Spill

By Brayden Yin

On July 25, the island of Mauritius had an oil spill that is so vast that it can be seen by satellite images. The MV Wakashio was carrying 4,000 metric ton of oil, when it ran aground on a coral reef. 1,000 tons of oil leaked out into the Indian ocean around Mauritius. The oil company, Mitsui OSK Lines, said that they had tried and failed to put containment around the oil because of rough seas.

Helicopters are now attempting to move oil off of the MV Wakashio to prevent any more of it from leaking into the Indian Ocean. At a news conference, Akihiko Ono, the Mitsui OSK executive vice president, said that the company was sorry for the spill and the “great trouble we have caused.” He swore that Mitsui OSK would do everything in their power to stop the spread of the oil.

Locals have been stuffing straw into cloth bags to absorb all the oil, since both the cloth and the straw is absorbent. 

On Friday, Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth of Mauritius appealed for help. France answered the call and sent a military aircraft loaded with pollution control instruments from its nearby island of Réunion to help with the oil control effort. Three days later, Japan sent a 6 member team as well.

Hopefully, soon the pollution will be controlled.


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