Earlier this month a 750-foot coal carrier ran aground outside Prince Rupert in British Columbia. While there wasn’t a spill, critics were quick to take advantage of the situation and declare a proposed pipeline in the region underscores the risks of increasing tanker traffic.
The Japanese-flagged ‘Amakusa Island’ was moving from its berth at a coal terminal to Prince Rupert’s outer harbor July 16. It scraped the ocean bottom, ripping its hull and flooding two ballast tanks, according to The Vancouver Sun.
There was no environmental damage reported. The Vancouver Sun says a local pilot from British Columbia was helping steer the Amakusa Island when it ran aground.
Still it’s a red flag for opponents of the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline. Environmental groups say the project would draw hundreds more tankers a year to the Canadian coast and shipping routes that cross the Aleutian Islands. They fear that could increase the risk of oil spills and accidents.
(source: kucb radio & tv)