Couva North MP worried about Tobago oil spill

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Couva North MP Ravi Ratiram

COUVA North MP Ravi Ratiram is worried about the oil spill which happened off the southwest coast of Tobago on February 7.

A barge identified as the Gulfstream was reportedly being towed by a tug boat, the Solo Creed, from Panama to Guyana.

The Gulfstream reportedly capsized en route, separated from the Solo Creed and ran aground on a reef off Tobago. Efforts are under way to locate the Solo Creed and identify its owners.

In a statement on Thursday, Ratiram did not focus on that aspect of the oil spill.

He chose to focus instead on the potential impacts of the spill on Tobago’s maritime and tourism industries.

“Questions have been raised about the methods employed for clean-up and whether adequate testing has been conducted to identify the spill’s contents and assess its ecological impact.”

Ratiram said, “It is imperative that we understand the full scope of this disaster, including the substances involved and the potential consequences for our delicate marine ecosystems.”

As the UNC’s shadow agriculture minister, Ratiram was particularly concerned about the effect of the spill on fishing in Tobago.

“The fishing industry, a cornerstone of Tobago’s economy, is facing severe repercussions.”

He was concerned about the safety of the public in eating fish from areas affected by the spill.

“I urge authorities to provide immediate and clear information to safeguard public health.”

Ratiram hoped that fishermen and their families would not be adversely affected by the spill.

He also called on Government to provide information on the duration and cost of clean up exercises in Tobago.