By an OGJ correspondent
RIO DE JANEIRO, May 15 -- Petroleo Brasiliero SA (Petrobras) reported Wednesday that a 16,000 l. oil spill of Nigerian crude off the city of Angra dos Reis, Rio de Janeiro state, was contained by booms and 63 support vessels.
The spill of light Nigerian crude happened Tuesday evening during the unloading and loading of the Brotas tanker. Petrobras executives said cause of the spill was under investigation.
Petrobras also said 500 of its employees were involved in the spill containment efforts, and they said this type of crude oil evaporates quickly.
Fernando Jordao, the mayor of Angra dos Reis, asked Petrobras for more details and complained that Petrobras was slow in reporting the spill. Municipality officials also said they will request that federal environmental authorities fine Petrobras $4 million.
This is in the latest in a series of Brazilian oil spills. Ibama, Brazil's federal environmental agency, fined Petrobras $10 million for oil spills from two platforms in the Campos basin. The P-36 production semisubmersible sank Mar. 20, 2001, as a result of damage sustained in explosions and a fire on Mar. 15.
The P-36 was insured for $500 million and spilled 1.2 million l. of diesel and 300,000 l. of crude after it sank. The explosions killed 10 workers immediately, and another died later in a hospital.
About a month later, 26,000 l. of oil spilled from the P-7 platform (OGJ, Apr. 23, 2001, p. 8). That spill was blamed on defective valves.
In July 2000, the 189,000 b/d Presidente Getulio Vargas refinery in Araucaria, Parana state, spilled 4 million l. of oil. In January 2000, 1.2 million l. crude spilled in Guanabara Bay, and the spill was blamed on ruptured piping in the Reduc refinery.