Indian copters help fight oil spill in Mauritius
Part of: GS-Prelims and GS-III – Environmental Degradation
- 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.
- 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.