OSPCB Notice to Paradip Refinery on Oil Spill
PARADIP: Odisha State Pollution Control Board (OSPCB) on Tuesday issued show-cause notice to Paradip Refinery, a unit of IOCL, asking the authorities concerned to explain why action will not be taken against the company for failing to prevent frequent oil spills causing damage to the environment.
The Pollution Control Board issued the notice after some persons on Monday cut a pipeline on Kaudia river bank here and placed a valve to extract fuel. They used drilling machine to make a hole in the pipeline to extract fuel by using plastic pipe, which has been recovered from the spot. The thieves fled from the spot after they failed to check the oil spill.
Regional Officer, OSPCB, Paradip, Prasant Kumar Kar said, “Our team has verified the spot and started study on environmental damage and impact of the oil spill on mangroves and marine species. We have also collected samples of water from the spot for test.”
A large volume of oil spilling from the plant’s pipelines into the sea and Kaudia river has led to fear of dwindling marine species besides damage to mangroves.
Local fishermen alleged lack of patrolling and security facilities at isolated places and absence of inbuilt automatic alert in the pipeline as the causes behind frequent theft of petroleum products by local gangs.
“The notice has been issued to the higher authorities of IOCL for frequent oil leakage,” Kar said. Lack of patrolling is being suspected as the main cause of oil theft from the pipelines but the quantity of spill is yet to be ascertained, he added.
In a similar theft on June 7 last year, some miscreants had cut a pipeline of IOCL at the same place and placed a valve to extract fuel.
Manager, Indian Oil Terminal, had lodged an FIR at Paradip police station regarding theft of petroleum products. But, police are yet to unearth the racket behind the theft of oil.
During the same time, police had seized a boat with 500 litres of kerosene and a pump set from the spot. No arrests have been made so far.
The four-lane 15 km pipelines from oil berth to oil refinery project of IOCL passes through an isolated route leaving it vulnerable to theft.