Friday, 3 June 2011

Gibraltar blamed in Spain for oil spill

Gibraltar is being blamed in Spain for an oil spill affecting the beaches of Algeciras. They say that the spill is from the tanks that went up in flames in Gibraltar port and that 6 kilometres of beach are already affected.

The Junta, the Andalusian regional government, say they are consider claiming damages from the Gibraltar government, while a claim is also being sent to the company that owns the sullage plant.

While nothing was being said in Gibraltar, the Spanish were saying that their foreign ministry was asking Britain if the appropriate measures were taken in Gibraltar to combat any damage to the environment.The Algeciras municipality said that they had put in a claim in the courts against Shell as they may be the owners of the tanks.

Meanwhile, fishermen in Algeciras say they are being affected by the oil spill.

The Gibraltar port has said that 4 or 5 tonnes of residues escaped to the sea.


  1. We will have to await oil samples from the alleged areas affected and North Mole and once these tests are carried out then we can start blaming Gibraltar.There have been occasions that when there has been an oil spill emanating from gibraltar others have emptied their tanks to make it worse.

  2. It would also be useful to read the information provided on this web site ( to know the correct name of the company involved in the accident and correct any allegations that have been reported here and there...

  3. It could be that we were responsible for the oil spill that has affected beaches in Algeciras, or it could be that we are not. How do we know?
    What is annoying is that (a) the Spaniards immediately blame Gibraltar for it, and (b) the Gibraltar Government says nothing about it.
    Do we take their silence as assuming culpability?
    The public would want to know exactly what's what. If it's out fault, we should recognise it; if it is not, we should equally say so, don't you agree?
    After all, we should know the kind of fuel that came out of the blazing tanks. Is that he same as what has surfaced in Algeciras?
    Where are the answers?

  4. > wrote:
    >> *_To the Chief Editor – PANOMARA - GIBRALTAR_*
    >> Dear Sir,
    >> I read with interest your article (on the web ) titled “*Gibraltar blamed in Spain for oil spill* “
    >> Unfortunately I regret to inform you that the article contains an erroneous information as regards the Shell Brand : [...] /The Algeciras municipality said that they had put in a claim in the courts against Shell as they may be the owners of the tanks./ [...]
    >> We do express our deepest sympathy with the people injured and impacted by this tragic event that took place in the harbour of Gibraltar but we would like to confirm hereby *_that Shell does not own any assets nor operates any business in Gibraltar since the end of 2010_*.
    >> Our understanding is that the tank that was in fire in the harbour belongs to NATURE GROUP, the company that operates a treatment and storage facility for oily waste-waters. Shell is in no way linked to NATURE GROUP.
    >> You may find useful to read the report on the events that NATURE GROUP published in their web site (**)
    >> In this respect, we would appreciate that you provide a relevant update in the next edition of your newspaper (printed and web editions) as the current erroneous information strongly and negatively impact our reputation in the area.
    >> Should you have any question, please feel free to contact me
    >> With anticipated thanks,
    >> Very best regards
    >> *Bruno Rosenthal** *
    >> *Société des Pétroles Shell S.A.S.*
    >> External Affairs Manager (France, Spain, Belgium & Luxemburg)
    On 04/06/2011 16:25, Panorama replied as follows:
    > Dear Sir,
    > The report states that 'the Algeciras municipality' said that they had put in a claim in the courts against Shell as they may be the owners of the tanks.
    > Clearly, you ought to inform the Algeciras municipality that you claim not to be the owners, and let us know what they say.
    > Further, could you confirm whether you have made the necessary enquiries in Spain to establish if the Algeciras municipality has in fact put in a claim against Shell, and inform us of your findings.
    The report was originally circulated by the Spanish newsagency Efe and has been published in other media apart from ourselves, including Yahoo!
    > By the way, you erroneously call us Panomara, which is not the name of our newspaper.
    > Best wishes.

  5. All sides here need to take a step back and grow up. Of course there's going to be some environmental fallout from this disaster, anyone who disputes this is deluded.

    In the meantime, local residents and wildlife yet again suffer the consequences.

    Whomever had an interest in the container should stand up and be counted, apologise and get on with cleaning up the area.

    Unsurprisingly, mouthpieces for "Corporate Entities" and Governments kick up a blame-storm and hide behind legal framework and poor legislation rather than do the right thing.

    I'm pretty sure there is no blameless party here...

    This tit-for-tat war of words serves no one bar the politicians and least of all the ordinary citizens of Gibraltar and the Campo de Gibraltar as a whole.

    It appeared that the operators and Gibraltar authorities were unprepared for such an event.

    I wonder how much sooner the blaze would have been dealt with if assistance had immediately been called upon from your neighbours?

  6. The Spanish fishing fleet at Algeciras are now claiming, I think they said, euros200,000 because 'the Gibraltar oil spill' has affected their fishing. What next?

  7. Dear All
    We were working on a ship anchored outside Algeciras port Last Monday and noticed major oil patches floating around the Algeciras port. Looked as someone had pumped bilge oil out in cover of the heavy mist. The current in the bay is always running clockwise, and will eventual pass our shores as well. But surely it originated in Algeciras.
    Brgds, Brian Nielsen. Octotech-Marine Ltd.

  8. WE did a repair and sea-trail with a ship out of Algeciras Monday and Tuesday (4-5 th) and noticed oil patches originating from Algeciras port Area. The current is always running clockwise in the bay, and anything pumped or spilled in Algeciras will be coming this way, but spill from here will be going out in the strait passing Rosia and not against the current to La Linea.
    Brgds, Brian