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Fish Unaffected By North Sea Oil Spill

by the Fish Site Editor
22 August 2011, at 1:00am

SCOTLAND, UK - Earlier this month, Shell UK Limited confirmed an oil leak in a flow line to its Gannet Alpha platform in the North Sea. The latest scientific monitoring has shown that there has been no impact on fish, or marine life.

The Marine Coastguards latest estimate is that the sheen currently covers an area of 6.7 square kms and is 3.62 tonnes by volume.

It is not easy to quantify the total volume spilled but we estimate so far that it is around 218 tonnes (1,300 barrels), said Glen Cayley, Technical Director of Shells exploration and production activities in Europe.

However, in terms of the volume on the surface, which changes from day to day, it is estimated today at about one tonne [approximately six barrels].

This is a significant spill in the context of annual amounts of oil spilled in the North Sea. We care about the environment and we regret that the spill happened. We have taken it very seriously and responded promptly to it.

On Friday divers closed the relief valve from which oil had been seeping. No oil has been released since that point. Continuous monitoring is being carried out to ensure the closure of the valve has been fully successful. That monitoring will continue.

Bertie Armstrong, chief executive of the Scottish Fishermens Federation, said: "After a lot of public speculation about the impact of the Shell oil spill in the North Sea, Scottish fishermen have been more interested in the facts, and we are pleased that the results from initial scientific monitoring has shown that there has been no impact on fish.

We are relieved that Shell appear to have managed to control the leak and that the impact of the oil spill on the marine environment has been minimal, although it is essential that the situation continues to be closely monitored."

the Fish Site Editor