Exxon Valdez Still Causing Trouble 23 Years after Alaska Oil Spill
Thursday, June 07, 2012
Exxon Valdez (photo: vesseltracker.com)
Having sailed its last voyage, the oil tanker formerly known as the Exxon Valdez now sits off the coast of India, mired in yet another environmental controversy.
Now called the Oriental Nicety, the ship was responsible for the disastrous March 1989 oil spill that dumped 11 million gallons of oil into Alaska’s Prince William Sound. The ship was headed for the scrapheap when environmentalists decided to use it to call attention to dangerous working conditions at the ship-breaking operations in Alang, the world’s largest concentration of ship demolishers. ToxicsWatch Alliance, based in New Delhi, filed a petition with India’s supreme court requesting the ship be denied entry into Alang. The request claimed the tanker contained toxic materials, making it too dangerous for dismantling at the mammoth shipyard.
Environmentalists admitted the vessel probably is no more toxic many of the almost 6.000 other ships that have been recycled at Alang. But by making a fuss over the once-controversial tanker, the activists hoped to draw attention to India’s weak environmental, labor and safety standards involving its lucrative ship-recycling industry.
To Learn More:
Exxon Valdez Remains Controversial Near Its End in India (by Mark Magnier, Los Angeles Times)
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