Young: Over US$14m spent by Government on Tobago oil spill

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Stuart Young, Minister of Energy and Energy Industries and Minister in the Office of the Prime Minister. – File photo

ENERGY Minister Stuart Young says Government may be able to access some degree of funding from the UK-based International Oil Pollution Compensation Funds (IOPC) to cover some of the costs it and the Tobago House of Assembly (THA) have incurred as a result of an oil spill which occurred off Tobago’s southeast coast in February.

Young made this statement at a news conference at the ministry’s offices at Tower C of the Port of Spain International Waterfront Centre on May 6.

He said Trinidad and Tobago’s ability to access funding from the IOPC is owing to its relationship with the organisation since 2001.

Young led a delegation to the IOPC’s office in London to make a case for Trinidad and Tobago to access monies from the IOPC to cover some of the costs for clean up of the oil spill.

He estimated that costs for the clean-up operation so far, from central government’s side, could be between US$14 to $20 million.

He also said efforts are ongoing to find the owners of the two vessels involved in this incident.

Young said information from the IOPC and other foreign governments suggest that these people could be part of a movement of rogue vessel owners which breach international maritime law.