East China Sea Oil Slick Is Now Three Times The Size Of Paris

REUTERS/Matthias Seifert

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Michael Bastasch DCNF Managing Editor
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An oil spill off China’s east coast has grown to cover an area about three times the size of Paris in the span of just a few days, according to officials.

China’s State Oceanic Administration estimated Wednesday the spill to be 39 square miles, but officials spotted three oil slicks Sunday that covered roughly 128 square miles.

An oil tanker collided with a Hong Kong-registered freight ship Jan. 14, catching fire and sinking into the sea. The tanker was carrying 121,000 tons of Iranian light crude oil, which was bound for South Korea.

So far, only three bodies from the tanker’s 32 crew members have been identified. Authorities are still searching for the missing crew, but experts also fear the environmental consequences of the oil spill.

Environmentalists claim that the oil tanker went down in a breeding ground for species of squid and crab. The spill is also in the migratory path of humpback and gray whales, according to Greenpeace.

However, fisherman Wang Junding told AFP that the spill probably won’t have much of an effect on fishing since “there aren’t many fish there to begin with.”


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