By SANCHESKA BROWN
Tribune Staff Reporter
THE BAHAMAS Electricity Corporation will construct a underwater wall to stop the haemorrhaging of oil in the Clifton area.
Eddie Darville, Board Director, said BEC is in the process of accepting bids from companies to build the environmentally sound, underwater wall.
“We have a situation down at Clifton Pier. There is lots of oil in the ground and the oil isn’t just BEC. All of the oil companies are located around the same area so nobody knows exactly who is producing all the oil into the water. BEC is doing their share. We have no tolerance for pumping oil into the ground. So now we intend to put an underground wall to prevent the oil from going to the ocean. Water will be able to pass through it but not oil and so you will have a flow back and forth with water but the oil will stay and then we will put pumps and pump the oil out as it is collected,” he said.
“It will take a few years to get rid of it all but we will eventually bring it all up. We are talking with companies now, we are getting bids now to start that operation and within a few months we will know exactly how we stand and what we will do but we have a few proposals in that respect.”
Mr Darville said BEC has also met with some of the other companies at Clifton Pier but no one wants to take responsibility for the oil spill.
“Nobody wants to take responsibility for the spill, everybody is saying BEC is the culprit. We have found when we tested there is jet fuel and all sorts of fuel. BEC doesn’t use jet fuel so I mean it’s not all BEC. So, we have all sorts of fuel in the ground but nobody wants to claim it because it is a cost to clean it up. BEC will try and get with their people and force their hand to help with the clean up. If not someone has to clean it up and I guess that will be BEC. We will champion it because it is an environmental issue and we can not let the environment be destroyed without any intervention.”
Oil has been spilling in the Clifton for over 15 years.
In June, Fred Smith QC, the Callenders & Co attorney and partner who acts for the Save the Bays coalition, threatened to sue BEC and the major oil companies in relation to ongoing oil spills and environmental issues at Clifton Bay.