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Shell should clean up spill: call to Barbadians to boycott all Shell products

NATIONNEWS.COM

Benn: Shell should clean up spill 

“If a ship had spilled oil on the shores of Barbados and they accepted liability, they would be spending a lot of money to clean up the shores of Barbados,” he told reporters.

“I believe that if Shell has accepted liability for this, they ought to go about finding a way of cleaning up the wells in the Gibbons Boggs, Pegwell Boggs and the Oistins area.”

Shell has accepted liability for leakage of aviation fuel from a pipeline running from Oistins to the Grantley Adams International Airport, but is yet to work out the level of compensation to farmers whose lands were affected.

Shell documents report oil spilling from the pipeline in 1995 and again in 2003.

Hope for closure

Benn said the oil spill problem had occupied the attention of four ministers of agriculture and he hoped finally to bring closure to the case.

The next step would be to seek a meeting with Shell’s representatives “to find out what plans they (have) to clean up the area”, he reported.

About a dozen farmers accompanied Benn on his first official tour of places contaminated by the oil spill.

He saw three water wells closed because of the contamination and a drainage well the Urban Development Commission (UDC) dug just outside Oistins, Christ Church, where jet fuel was said to be floating on the water.

Benn said there was evidence that the farmers had been impacted by the spill. “We will pursue this matter with vigour and seek to bring closure to it,” he commented.

Spokespersons for the Southern Farmers group, Jacquelyn Bartlett and Arrindel Evelyn, said the oil spillage had devastated farmers and significantly reduced production of vegetables in an area comprising more than 180 acres and worked by dozens of farmers.

Bartlett repeated a call to Barbadians to boycott all Shell products.

Evelyn also said the Government should have a long, hard look at Shell’s bid to drill for oil offshore, given what he termed its “questionable” treatment of the farmers. (TY)

http://www.nationnews.com/story/354100652508570.php

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