The person in charge of the Emergency Control team in charge of cleaning the oil spill in Repsol, José Torel, admitted that the magnitude of the disaster has exceeded the company’s forecasts. For this reason, they have now modified the schedule, calculating that the hydrocarbon cleanup would take place at the end of March.
“In an optimistic scenario”, specified Torel, who had to come from the Spanish subsidiary to lead the process of withdrawing the crude oil.
The official also acknowledged that the cleanup process is slow. After 20 days of having registered the oil leak in the sea of Ventanilla, Repsol it has only advanced 32% in the cleaning process.
The executive explained that the delay is due to a phenomenon on the beach that is complicating their task.
“The oil is staying between the coast and the sea, in what is known as the breaker. There it is very difficult to get close and now we are developing a strategy to obtain that crude “said on a visit to the refinery The Pampilla, according to The Republic.
“Depending on the tide and the winds, that oil sometimes goes to the sea and we collect it there, but other times it returns to the beach, and a beach that we had clean we have to clean again”, he added.
Tello is in charge of almost 3 thousand people for cleaning, of which 2 thousand 300 are in operations on the coast, 500 in the sea and 90 in the control center. It also meets with all the international specialists who represent the 50 companies that are currently collaborating with the remediation and cleanup process.
NEW CLEANING SCHEDULE
This new evaluation of José Torel contradicts what the executive director of Repsol had previously stated, Jaime Fernandez-Cuesta, who had guaranteed that the cleanup work would be completed by the end of February.
Thus, in response to the demands of the Peruvian authorities, On Thursday, February 3, Repsol released its updated Contingency Plan and Management Plan for Hydrocarbon Spills at Sea. According to Tello, this new schedule and cleanup process is zoned.
“There are three important milestones: the first is when the collection of hydrocarbon from the sea is finished, which we expect to be around mid-February. Another milestone is the cleaning of easily accessible beaches with friendly hydrography, which we are estimating for the end of February. And the last milestone will be the part of the coast that has cliffs and is difficult to access, where the work will be much slower and more specialized. That final part is going to cost us a little more, but we estimate that we will be in an acceptable situation at the end of March, more or less.he declared.
On the other hand, It seems that the measures initially taken by the company to clean affected areas has made the process end up taking longer than planned.
Regarding the amount of crude oil spilled, an initial report from Repsol detailed that only 0.16 barrels had been spilled. However, later the Agency for Environmental Assessment and Control (OEFA) projected 6,000 barrels and now the Ministry of the Environment (Minam) reported that it would be 11,900 barrels. In addition, according to the same company, the ecological disaster has occupied 49 kilometers of coastline and 105 square kilometers of sea.
On January 31, the OEFA paralyzed the activities of the La Pampilla refinery because it declared that Repsol did not meet the technical requirements to guarantee that there would be no other oil spill.