AS the anniversary approaches of the Braer tanker disaster, the seas remain at risk of pollution with two decades after the Shetland oil spill, according to conservationists.
January 5 marks the day 20 years ago that the Liberian-registered vessel ran aground with 85,000 tonnes of crude oil on board – twice as much as was on the Exxon Valdez, whose grounding four years earlier off Alaska had devastated wildlife.
Thanks to some of the worst weather ever seen on Shetland, coastlines were spared the worst, with the oil dispersed by weeks of storms.
Lang Banks, of conservation group WWF, claimed the UK Government's "foolhardy decision" to press ahead with the removal of one of two emergency tugs covering the Scottish islands has left the marine environment without adequate protection.
He said: "One only needs to look at the recent accidents on Total's Elgin and Shell's Gannet Alpha platforms, or the almost one thousand other oil and chemical spills that take place around our coast annually, to know that we're never far away from the next major pollution incident.
keyboard shortcuts: V vote up article J next comment K previous comment