NewsVolcanic eruption off Tonga leads to oil spill in...

Volcanic eruption off Tonga leads to oil spill in Peru: country declares climate emergency

The volcanic eruption in the Pacific off Tonga also hit Peru thousands of kilometers away. Around 6000 barrels pollute the sea and several beaches.

  • More than 80,000 of the approximately 104,000 inhabitants of the kingdom are affected by the volcanic eruption off Tonga.
  • The humanitarian situation is dramatic, there is a lack of food and drinking water. The fear of Corona* is growing.
  • The seaquake also had drastic consequences in the South American country of Peru.

Nuku’alofa/Lima – After the oil spill off the coast of Peru, the government declared a climate emergency. President Pedro Castillo on Thursday (01/20/2022, local time) called on the Spanish oil company Repsol to take full responsibility for the accident and the effects on nature, as reported by the daily La República. It is the worst environmental disaster in the country’s recent history.

Over the weekend, around 6,000 barrels of oil spilled while unloading a tanker at the La Pampilla refinery north of the capital Lima. La Pampilla is the largest refinery in Peru. Repsol said the disaster was caused by high waves after a volcanic eruption in the South Pacific off Tonga. The energy company accused the Peruvian government of not having issued a tsunami warning.

Volcanic eruption off Tonga: Pacific coast in Peru hit by oil spill

The spilled oil has polluted around 18,000 square kilometers of protected areas with a variety of birds and plants. Authorities closed three beaches near the town of Ventanilla. Castillo explained that the government had formed a committee to implement concrete measures to protect nature and residents. Environment Minister Rubén Ramírez announced tough sanctions against Repsol and accused the company of not providing information about the accident quickly enough. This was enough time to contain the effects of the environmental catastrophe. According to media reports, the public prosecutor’s office had announced that it would start investigations.

Meanwhile, more and more countries are sending aid supplies to the Kingdom of Tonga, which has been hard hit by the volcanic eruption. Videos show the devastation at the scene. Food and drinking water are scarce. There is growing fear that the foreign ships and planes could also bring the corona virus into the previously largely isolated kingdom. The handover of the relief goods should therefore take place without contact. According to the Save the Children organization, more than 80,000 people have been affected by the disaster, including at least 28,000 children. (kke with epd/KNA) * is an offer from IPPEN.MEDIA.

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