Indian copters help fight oil spill in Mauritius

  • IASbaba
  • August 20, 2020
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Indian copters help fight oil spill in Mauritius

Part of: GS-Prelims and GS-III – Environmental Degradation

In News:

  • The indigenously developed helicopters – Dhruv Advanced Light helicopter (ALH) and Chetak helicopters are being used extensively in Mauritius for salvage and rescue missions to clear the oil spill 
  • The spill occurred after a Japanese owned cargo ship MV Wakasio ran aground 40 km off the capital Port Louis.

Key takeaways

  • MV Wakasio which was on its way from China to Brazil ran aground on the reef at Pointe d’Esny
  • It is an ecologically sensitive zone on Mauritius South Eastern coastline
  • The Pointe d’Esny Wetlands are designated as a site of international importance under the Convention on Wetlands
  • The carrier held tonnes of low-sulfur fuel oil, diesel and lubricant oil.
  • Effects of the spill: 
    • It threatens the ecology of the coastline of Mauritius and marine life in the Indian Ocean.
    • It endangers the already endangered coral reefs, seagrasses in the shallow waters, mangroves, the fishes and other aquatic fauna.
    • Giant tortoises, endangered green turtles, and the critically endangered Pink Pigeon are at risk.
  • Given the magnitude of the oil spill, Mauritius had declared a state of environmental emergency.

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