Indonesia: Govt. to investigate Pertamina's responsibility for oil spill in Balikpapan

Author: Wilda Asmarini & Bernadette Christina Munthe, Reuters (Indonesia), Published on: 6 April 2018

"Indonesia Blames Ship’s Anchor for Massive Oil Spill", 05 Apr 2018

A coal ship that dropped anchor off the coast of the Indonesian port city of Balikpapan on Borneo island was likely to blame for an oil spill, after dragging a pipeline more than 100 metres and causing it to crack. Indonesia declared a state of emergency this week after the spill and fire killed five fishermen. The environment ministry said the oil covered an area of nearly 13,000 hectares and had polluted 60 km of coastal ecosystems, including mangrove wetlands and marine mammal habitats. “We suspect the pipe was dragged by the ship that caught fire.” Pertamina had at first said initial tests showed the oil was marine oil used in boats, but on Wednesday said a cracked 20-year-old underwater pipeline linked to its refinery in Balikpapan was the source. By Tuesday night, around 70 cubic metres of spilt oil had been contained by a team from several oil companies operating in the area and government agencies. Some green groups have criticised Pertamina for not taking responsibility for the spill. Director Siswanto said Pertamina had been late...announcing the source of the oil... [T]he government was investigating the company...suspected of breaking...company’s pipeline.

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Related companies: Pertamina