Wednesday, November 21, 2007

The Black Sea - in name, in colour, in state

The recent oil spill, that poured over 5,55,000 gallons of fuel oil in to the Black Sea, has been termed as “one of the worst on record”. Go figure. 30,000 birds are feared dead. It's an understatement when I say that's a huge loss for the planet. One that we can't afford. Precious, irreplaceable wildlife has been wiped out causing a massive environmental disaster and a serious ecological imbalance. The weather – a violent storm, to be precise - was cited as the reason for the spill. However, the real cause remains official negligence that allowed the oil transport ships to ply even though they were using outdated and inadequate equipment. The havoc that the storm wreaked pales in comparison to the damage from the oil spill. We’re standing at the brink of the threat of losing the Black Sea itself. It disgusts me that such a catastrophe has occurred because of such a dismal cause; as a result of which we’ve all lost so much.

Corruption, negligence and red tapism have long plagued administration systems around the world. Various attempts are made to eliminate or at least reduce their impact. But the problems persist, raging through everything in their path, bulldozing them to dust. I get that there are a dozen factors beyond our control. Reasons no one can be blamed for. But it’s just unacceptable for such ‘accidents’ to occur simply because those responsible couldn’t be bothered enough.

Russian environmentalists say that it may take several years to clean up the mess from the oil spill, the problem being aggravated by the oil that is quickly sinking to the seabed. It could last there for generations, affecting anything that attempts to be borne of it. Russian prosecutors are to conduct a probe into this oil spill. But it may already be too late. Several feathered creatures have met an oily grave and been choked out of existence. We’ve lost plenty.