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Singapore oil spill update

May 31, 2010
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Photos from NEA and MPA reports on the oil spill. So, I guess if there was one thing good that came out of the oil spill, is that all the junk from East Coast and Changi are cleared! 🙂 OK, jokes aside… here is the latest update released by NEA yesterday. The original news release can be found here.

Singapore, 30 May 2010 – As at 10 am, East Coast Beach and Changi Beach have been cleared of oil stains. No oil patches are visible at sea from the two beaches. Work is still underway to clear the bags of contaminated sand removed from the beach.

On 29 May at about 6pm, several oil patches each about 50m long were sighted west of SAF Yacht Club. NEA will continue to monitor the situation. Should the oil patches hit the rock bund, workers will be deployed to clean them.

At Chek Jawa, 98% of cleaning is complete. Only small patches of oil film are visible on the water surface. Cleaning work is still continuing. In the meantime, the oil absorbent booms and paddings are still in place to minimise impact to Chek Jawa.

To date, NEA and the ship operator AET have mobilised 495 workers to clean up the oil on the affected beaches and 14 NEA officers are continuing with surveillance at East Coast Park, Changi Beach and Pulau Ubin. As both East Coast Beach and Changi Beach have been cleared of oil stains, the manpower for beach cleaning will be reduced progressively.

To date, 60.4 tonnes of sand contaminated with oil have been collected from East Coast Beach and Changi Beach and disposed off at the Semakau Offshore Landfill.

Trial use of nano-particles for shoreline clean-up

On 28 May, NEA conducted a trial for the use of nano-particles on thick patches of oil at East Coast Beach at the jetty close to The Big Splash. The product, “Eco Blue – Industrial Blend” (IB) is a blend of plant-derived, water-based, readily-biodegradable ingredients that was developed as a clean-up and mitigation agent for a range of hydrocarbon products1. The IB has been tested by TÜV SÜD PSB which is a recognised product certification and accreditation body based in Singapore. The preliminary results show promise. NEA is carrying out further tests on the effectiveness of the product.

Water quality

East Coast Beach and Changi Beach are still closed pending ongoing checks on the water quality. Members of the public are advised to refrain from swimming and engaging in water activities in these areas until further notice.

Air quality

NEA continues to monitor the air quality along East Coast Park and Changi Beach and has detected no toxic chemicals in the air that would pose a risk to health. As of today, the petroleum-like smell at the beaches is hardly detectable.

Chek Jawa

Chek Jawa is still open to visitors, but NParks has suspended guided walks for the next two weeks (from 29 May) to allow them to better monitor the situation. NParks will provide regular updates to keep the public appraised.

Operations over the next few days

Agencies involved (NEA, MPA, NParks, PUB and AVA) will continue to monitor the situation closely.

Except for activities involving bodily contact with the water, all other activities can proceed at the affected areas.

During this period, members of the public may come across traces of oil patches that have been treated with the dispersants or oil-stained flotsam (floating debris) near our coastline. There is no cause for alarm and they can contact our 24-hour call centre at 1800-CALL NEA (2255632) if they have any queries.

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1 The nano-particle technology acts by emulsifying the oil into extremely small nano-emulsions, encapsulate those particles in a water/oxygen bearing solution and distribute them into the water phase where they are readily metabolised by naturally occurring bacteria in the environment.

The product has also been used in other countries:

– Dealing with oil contamination on government grasslands in Saskatchewan Canada which is a protected environment.

– In the daily oil operations at Fort McMurry tar sands.

– Offshore drilling rigs and platforms.#

Till the next update!

Mel

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. Lily permalink
    May 31, 2010 1:45 pm

    Any news if they still need volunteers to help with clean up?

  2. Mellow permalink*
    June 1, 2010 5:45 am

    Hi Lily, I believe the cleanup is finished but the NEA is still monitoring the quality of water and air in Changi and East Coast Beach. But you may contact ACRES at http://www.acres.org.sg/ because they were the ones coordinating volunteers for the cleanup if you would like to help! 🙂

  3. July 31, 2010 7:20 pm

    I hate this polluted world and corrupted companies.

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