A new contaminated site in Arctic ? (*)

2 Sep 2010

Since Friday 27th August, the Arctic Ocean is threatened by the Clipper Adventurer. This ferry converted into a cruise ship was built in 1975 in ex-Yugoslavia. She is flying the Bahamian flag. She ran aground a reef along the Nunavut shoreline. Salvage operations are considered.

The state of Bahamas has not signed the MARPOL annex IV on the prevention of pollution by sewage from ships. The owner is based in Miami.

This warning incident demonstrates that all nautical and juridical precautionary measures are not implemented to avoid pollution in the Arctic Ocean.

Many passengers – all of them have been evacuated – among them the Canadian writer Margaret Atwood, say that they will rebook the cruise for next year to watch close seals and whales. With such a Human curiosity, marine mammals will watch close without delay oil slicks and other wastes from wrecked cruise ships.

IMO (International Maritime Organisation) must urgently consider the Arctic Ocean as a sensitive area following the example of Antarctica waters. Each riverine State of the Arctic Ocean must reinforce the navigation rules and must be very cautious with flags of convenience.


(*) See «Polar Star n°2 – 2750 contaminated sites in Arctic »

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