Following the oil spill of MV Wakashio, which ran aground on 25 July off Pointe d’Esny, on the south-eastern coast of Mauritius, the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)/United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) Joint Environment Unit have jointly deployed an oil spill response expert.
Due to COVID-19 travel restrictions and border closures in Mauritius, the expert was (11 August) awaiting onward travel via specially chartered UN flight from Nairobi, following COVID tests.
In addition, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Mauritius and the International Tanker Owners Pollution Federation (ITOPF) are also mobilizing environmental and oil spill experts. A number of countries, including France and Japan, also offer assistance to Mauritius. The country has activated its national oil spill contingency plan.
Satellite mapping support is being sought from UNOSAT, to provide an indication of the extent of the spill and to inform the response effort.
IMO is supporting the Government of Mauritius by providing technical advice on oil spill response issues and in the coordination of assistance.
Source and Photo Credit : IMO