Dutch military assist Bonaire with oil spill

Dutch military assist  Bonaire with oil spill

The clean-up continues.

KRALENDIJK--A group of about fifteen military troops have been on Bonaire since last Wednesday to speed up the clearing of oil residue from the coastline, acting Island Governor Reynolds “Nolly” Oleana announced during a press conference.

The troops were first deployed at Foodies and Lagun, after which they would continue at Punta Kalbas and Mar Cultura. Soldiers from the Netherlands and local militia in neighbouring Curaçao were brought over by Caribbean Coast Guard cutter “Jaguar”.

Oleana is happy with the assistance. “This way, pollution can be tackled even faster. During the past days many groups have offered their help and we want to thank all.”

He said the situation seems under control, but that it is still too early to cheer. “One must wait to see what happens in the coming days.”

The oil at Sorobon has been cleaned up, but the area was not reopened to the public immediately. It must first be determined whether the situation will stay as it currently is or change, so people should not yet swim, fish, dive or kayak near the sites where oil washed ashore, as small particles of oil left in the water may be harmful to their health.

When removing the slicks, it was decided to tackle the Lac/Sorobon area first, as this recreational area is very popular. Heavy equipment is used for cleaning at Lagun.

Harbourmaster Günther Flanegin stated that there was also oil at Onima and Playa French. The area between Willemstoren and Cargill is clean, but he and his team continue to monitor the situation. Flanegin emphasised, just like Oleana, to stay ready and not think it is over yet.

Nature parks foundation Stinapa coordinates the cleaning up of the polluted areas, but it is unclear to them what impact this spill had on the island’s environment. This will become known after the affected areas have been cleaned and the damage to nature investigated, explained manager Judith Raming.

The Daily Herald

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