Huge Oil Spill May Destroy Mauritius's Coral Reefs
The oil tanker MV Wakashio has leaked 1,000 tons of oil into the sea and may break apart and dump thousands of tons more.
PORT LOUIS, MAURITIUS — Mauritius has declared a state of emergency after a stricken tanker began spilling tons of fuel, causing an ecological disaster among the reefs to the southeast of the island nation, Reuters reports.
The Panamanian-flagged bulk carrier Wakashio is owned by Japan-based Okiyo Marine, an affiliate of Nagashiki Shipping. According to the Washington Post, the ship struck the reefs on July 25 and has leaked more than 1,000 tons of oil.
India-based news site The Saddle reports that the 300-meter-long Wakashio carried 3,800 tons of bunker fuel, 200 tons of diesel and 90 tons of lubricants. According to Al Jazeera, Mauritius fears the ship could break up completely and release all its cargo.
Al Jazeera reports oil sludge could be seen seeping into the ocean and white sand beaches, which threatens the fish, corals and marine wildlife that Mauritius depends on for its economy.
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