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WWF Greece Issues Impact Study of Agia Zoni II Oil Spill, Calls for Sanctions

© WWF Hellas

© WWF Hellas

In efforts to ensure that justice is served for all parties responsible for the oil spill off Salamina which drifted across the Saronic Gulf coastline, World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Greece released a report of current findings into the impact of the natural disaster.

“We want this extremely serious incident, the oil spill, to be reason for the shielding of Greek seas from such dangers, which we expect to increase dramatically with the launch of drilling operations for hydrocarbons in the Aegean and Ionian seas,” said WWF Greece Director Dimitris Karavellas.

The report, which includes mapping of the pollution in the first days after the wreck, data on the ecological status of the Saronic Gulf, as well as data on the ecological impact and information on international response methods employed in such major oil spill accidents worldwide, was submitted to the Piraeus prosecutor handling the lawsuit.

WWF Greece “remains at the scene of the crime and is submitting in a special report every piece of available information on the matter,” the statement said.

Salamina, Photo Source: WWF Hellas / Giorgos Lialios

Salamina, Photo Source: WWF Hellas / Giorgos Lialios

WWF Greece filed a lawsuit in September over the incident. The Greek-flagged Agia Zoni II sank while anchored on September 10 operating on an extended certificate and releasing a large part of its 2,200-ton fuel oil cargo into the sea. The vessel was raised and refloated last week with an investigation under way.

The environmental group is, among others, demanding that criminal and administrative sanctions be imposed; a monitoring program of indicators be put in place with the direct publication of results on the ecological status of the Saronic Gulf; regular inspections by environmental experts of contaminated beaches before they are open to swimmers and for other uses and the specification of compensatory measures until recovery from the environmental damage is ensured.

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