Australian oil spill reaches the beaches: endangers wildlife
Oil and fertiliser that spilled out from a cargo ship off the coast of Australia yesterday have now reached the beaches on Australia's northeast coast. Moreton Island is most affected as well as the beaches on the Sunshine Coast, and there is 30 tons of oil that now needs to be cleaned up. Animals, birds, and marine life are covered in oil and won't survive unless they are cleaned up.
Moreton Bay is a marine sanctuary that houses sea birds and other animals like turtles, dolphins and pelicans.
The slick is 15 kilometres long and 2 metres wide and the maritime safety authority has issued an investigation on what they are calling the 'state's worst spill in 30 years.'
"Australia, through international conventions, can take certain actions against the master and the company," said the authority's John Watkinson.
"We can also fine the ship. We have oil in the water, we have pollution (and) it's not meant to happen, it shouldn't happen," he added.
The Hong Kong company Swire could be found guilty of environmental breaches and might have to pay the clean up costs, which are $100,000 a day.
The clean up will take more than a week to complete.
There are still some containers missing and aircraft have been dispatched to look for it.