Colin Kinsley’s recent attack on MP Nathan Cullen (Sentinel, April 20) contains so many ridiculous statements, it’s hard to know where to begin in responding.
I will just focus on the one comment, however, the statement that there has not been an Exxon Valdez type spill since it happened in 1989.
A quick Internet search revealed so many large oil tanker spills in the intervening years, that it would take several pages to list them, so I picked a few at random to illustrate how wrong Kinsley is:
On August 15, 2006, a Japanese tanker, the Bright Artemis, spilled about 1.4 million gallons of crude oil in the Indian Ocean following a collision with a cargo ship.
This was the largest spill ever recorded from a Japanese tanker and created a 10 mile long slick.
On August 1, 2006, the oil tanker Solar I sank in rough seas. 500,000 litres (110,000 gallons) of bunker oil were spilled in the Philippines’ worst environmental disaster.
On November 18, 2004, a cargo ship exploded and broke in half at a port in southern Brazil. Workers found dead fish and dolphins in the 20 km. long toxic slick of fuel oil, diesel fuel and methanol that leaked from the ship.
On August 13, 2003, the MV Tasman Spirithas, broke up off Pakistan’s Arabian Sea port, Karachi after spilling nearly 10,000 tonnes (3 million gallons) of oil, sparking fears of lasting damage to local marine life.
On November 13, 2002, the Prestige carrying 20 million gallons (70,000 metric tonnes) of fuel oil broke up, creating the largest environmental disaster in Spanish and Portuguese history.
On January 16, 2000, the Jessica spilled 175,000 gallons of diesel and bunker oil into the sea off the Galapagos Islands in what was seen as one of Galapagos’ worst environmental disasters.
On February 15, 1996, the Sea Empress was pushed off course by the currents and became grounded after hitting rocks in the middle of the channel while entering the Milford Haven waterway in South Wales.
She spilt 73,000 tons (20 million gallons) of crude oil within the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park – one of Europe’s most important and sensitive wildlife and marine conservation areas.
It was Britain’s third largest oil spillage and the 12th largest in the world at the time
On April 11, 1991, a VLCC (Very Large Crude Carrier) exploded with 1 million barrels of crude oil and sank off the coast of Genoa, Italy. The Mediterranean coasts of Italy and France were polluted for years afterwards.
On June 8, 1990, the Megaborg released 5.1 million gallons of oil as the result of an accident and subsequent fire 60 nautical miles south-southeast of Galveston, Texas.
Do you get the idea?
The phrase “worst environmental disaster in such and such a country’s history” seems to keep repeating itself, doesn’t it?
Imagine any one of these disasters occurring in the Douglas Channel or Inside Passage.
Maybe, Mr. Kinsley, not Mr. Cullen, is the one who should do his homework.