No evidence yet of suspected ‘oil spill’ offshore Guyana – EPA Head
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has thus far found no indication of any suspected oil spill, some 45 nautical miles off the Coast of Guyana, Executive Director, Khemraj Parsram, said on Monday.
News of a ‘suspected oil spill’ came to the fore after video clips taken by fishermen were published on a social media site on Saturday, showing what appears to be a brown substance in the Atlantic Ocean.
“Based on what the fishermen reported, I cannot say whether it is indeed oil or something else and we attempted to verify because the fishermen were not forthcoming…they did not report to us directly, we did not get an accurate location, we only saw the same video that was circulated,” the EPA Head explained.
Parsram said that the EPA conducted its own aerial surveillance and turned up empty-handed. He said too that an official from the EPA attempted to go to the location, but bad weather hampered this.
By all indications, no evidence was seen to indicate that an oil spill occurred, the EPA Head explained.
“The fishing boat attempted to go to that area, but because of the bad weather yesterday morning, they could not make it so that turned up no result and the aerial survey, after scouting the entire area…so we scoured that area and we did not see anything off our own,” he explained.
Now, the EPA is on high alert and is still conducting investigations into the reports.
Parsram explained that the Agency is now relying on “satellite imagery” using Sky Truth; a non-profit environmental watchdog that uses satellite imagery and remote sensing data to identify and monitor threats to the planet’s natural resources.
Moreover, the EPA Head said too that the Agency is also relying on assistance from fishermen to give accurate reports as well.
“We are hoping as well that the fishermen who took the videos and other fishermen can contact us if they notice anything elsewhere, they can immediately take a sample and take an accurate coordinate for us so that we can quickly put systems in place to mitigate any damages that can occur,” he related.