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Diesel fuel spill near Norilsk: new stage of the clean-up and need for public control

15 june 2020
The main phase of the fuel clean-up on the Ambarnaya River has been completed, - WWF-Russia was reported this morning by rescuers. For two weeks the bulk of the oil spill was being contained with booms. The relocation of the main forces and means for the post-treatment of the channels and small lakes on the right bank of the river is being prepared. However, there is still a lot of work ahead, and it is premature to announce the successful resolution of the situation.
"According to our information, about 30 thousand cubic meters of oil-water mixture have been collected by now, - comments Alexey Knizhnikov, Head of the Program for the Business Environmental Responsibility at WWF-Russia. - According to our forecasts, skimming of the rest of oil products will take several more days. Now when the focus of the rescue operation is shifting from the water surface, it is necessary to assess the pollution of the coastline and organize the collection of oil products from floodplains. It’s important that the shores of polluted waters are maximally cleaned during the summer months".

Environmentalists say that in order to assess the extent of pollution of Lake Pyasino and the river flowing out of it with the toxic components of diesel fuel, it is urgently necessary to establish high-quality scientific hydrochemical and hydrobiological monitoring. Monitoring data will also be used to produce general public assessment of the consequences of the accident. Work on it will begin in the near future.

WWF is convinced that the accident area needs close attention and public control even after completion of the work. It is the only way to influence and make Norilsk Nickel fulfill its obligations to eliminate the consequences of the disaster and restore disturbed ecosystems, both as a result of this accident and in connection with numerous discharges of pollutants in previous years.

For additional information please contact
Head of the responsible industry Program