A UN-owned ship arrived off war-torn Yemen on 16th, for a risky operation to pump more than a million barrels of oil from a decaying tanker and prevent a catastrophic spill.
FSO Safer was abandoned off Yemen’s Red Sea port of Hudaydah after the civil war broke out in the country in 2015.he supertanker
Since then, the vessel has deteriorated significantly in absence of any servicing or maintenance, prompting fears of a major environmental disaster.
As informed, the delicate operation to transfer 1.14 million barrels of Marib light crude to the Nautica, bought by the United Nations for the operation, is expected to begin towards the end of the coming week.
Despite stringent safety checks, concerns remain about a spill or an explosion. The Safer is carrying four times as much oil as was spilled in the 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster off Alaska.
Maintenance operations on the Safer were paused in 2015 during the war on Yemen. Due to the obstructions brought about by the blockade, the UNDP has strictly warned for several years that a catastrophe may explode at any time.
As explained, a significant spill can result in an environmental disaster, damage Yemen’s fishing communities, and compel the closure of imported ports and desalination plants.