The Port of Rotterdam has announced that it will replace nine kilometres of contaminated stone slopes that became toxic after Bow Jubail oil spill, which occurred on June 23-24, 2018.
The final restrictions on shipping, caused by the water pollution, were lifted in July, and cleaning has now begun on surfaces such as quay walls, jetties, buoys and poles, which are being spray-washed under high pressure.
Currently, cleaning is still focussed on those sections of the port infrastructure which have not yet been cleaned, as this did not restrict the operations of the terminals concerned.
The contamination of the slopes has affected the top, sides and bottom of the stone, as well as its filter layer.
Although spray-cleaning proved effective for other contaminated areas, the same method will not achieve the same solution for the slopes as most of the volatile components have evaporated.
This means replacing, as opposed to cleaning, will be quicker and cheaper.
The incident has now caused approximately USD $91.6 million of damage, which is to be recovered from Odjfell, the owner of the vessel which leaked.
Commenting on the spill, Port of Rotterdam COO Ronald Paul said: “We will do everything in our power to recover these damages. Society here cannot be left to pay for this.”
The port, which has almost 75 kilometres of quay wall and more than 200 kilometres of slopes, expects the entire clean-up operation to last until the middle of next year.