Caspian Pipeline Consortium (CPC) says that the water quality around its marine terminal in Yuzhnaya Ozereevka, Russia, on the Black Sea, has returned to normal following an oil spill on 7 August 2021.
The spill happened at 4.49pm local time during the loading of the Greek-flagged tanker Minerva Symphony. CPC general director Nikolay Gorban told a press conference that the cause of the spill was likely the failure of the single point mooring (SPM) expansion joint as a result of a manufacturing defect. Around 12 m3 of oil was spilled, according to CPC, and covered an area of around 200 m2.
CPC deployed 17 emergency response vessels, which deployed booms, four skimmers and oil storage tanks to contain the spill. The response was completed by 10.42pm local time on the same day.
The company’s own environmental engineers have worked with contractors and specialists from independent laboratories to monitor air and water quality. CPC says that this monitoring shows that the environmental situation ‘remains stable and causes no concerns’.
Residents of the area told local media outlets that the spill had spread much further, including into the Utrish Natural Reserve, while the Russian Academy of Science said that satellite images showed that the spill had reached the open sea. However, the Russian regulator Rospotrebnadzor released its official findings on 13 August 2021, confirming that it believed the spill to have been successfully contained.
‘Novorossiysk and Anapa Territorial Sections of Krasnodar Krai Rospotrebnadzor Department took samples of sea water in recreation areas to test them for pollution indicators for the content of petroleum products. The content of petroleum products in the samples of the sea water in the recreation zones in Novorossiysk and Anapa sea areas does not exceed the maximum allowable concentrations (MAC),’ says a statement on the regulator’s website.
CPC has set up an ad hoc commission to fully investigate the incident.