UN completes pumping of 1.1 million barrels of oil from damaged tanker in Red Sea13.08.2023 | 14:01 |
The United Nations successfully completed the transfer of oil from the FSO Safer supertanker off the Red Sea coast in Yemen, averting the immediate threat of a major spill.
The Safer has been in danger of destruction or explosion for years. A major spill from a vessel would lead to an environmental and humanitarian disaster.
The oil cargo aboard the FSO Safer was transferred to the replacement vessel beginning July 25 by lead maritime rescuer SMIT, which was contracted by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) for the operation.
Of the 1.14 million barrels, the maximum possible amount was produced. However, less than 2% of the original oil cargo remains mixed with the sludge, which will be removed during Safer's final cleaning.
UNDP Administrator Achim Steiner said: “Today is a moment of pride for many people in the UN system, as well as for our donors and partners who have worked tirelessly over the past months and years to avert disaster in a country already vulnerable after a protracted conflict. There is still a lot to be done, but today we can say with confidence that the immediate threat of the spill has been averted.”