A Venezuelan-flagged vessel at risk of spilling 60 million gallons of oil into the Caribbean, and causing an environmental crisis.
In January 2019, the United States imposed sanctions on Venezuela’s biggest state-owned oil company PDVSA to force out Nicolás Maduro, the Venezuelan president, who has been , a fraud and perpetrator of crimes against humanity.
The (Fishermen and Friends of the Sea) are attempting to raise awareness and appealing for the Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, and international ambassadors, to address the situation and take action urgently.
In a video on their , Gary Aboud, the Corporate Secretary of FFOS said that he went out to sea on October 16, to get “firsthand, reliable information of the condition of the Nabarima”. He said this was a duty to all who depend on a clean ocean.
The Maduro administration of Venezuela recently released images and information stating that the vessel is ‘stable’ and poses little risk. Aboud found the vessel on a roughly 25 degree tilt, held together by rusting chains. He argues these are not strong enough to stand through anything which could cause the vessel to topple.
The FFOS claimed that the facts suggest that due to negligence and unprofessional conduct, the largest environmental disaster is imminent.
Loss of Marine Life
According to the , there have been “62 spills of seven tonnes and over, resulting in 164,000 tonnes of oil lost” in the past decade. Oil spills considerably damage ecosystems and marine life, as seen in 2010 with the largest oil spill in history.
Thousands of turtles, fish, dolphins and whales died following the explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig. Beyond recovery, coral reefs were destroyed after 200 million gallons of oil exploded. Residents, fishermen and workers helping with the clean-up of oil suffered ill-effects from the chemicals. The economy of the Gulf of Mexico commercial fishing industry plummeted, and fishermen went bankrupt.
If the Nabarima sinks, the effects would mirror the effects of the Deepwater Horizon spill. Oceans, wildlife, coral reefs and the economy of the Caribbean could take years, if not decades, to recover.