Fishermen’s rights must be reflected in oil spill compensation plan: investigators

Relevant authorities and companies should keep the rights and interests of local fishermen in mind when they negotiate compensation for two oil spills that recently occurred in north China’s Bohai Bay, an investigation team said on Monday.

Investigators also stressed the protection of China’s marine ecology in the formulation of the compensation plan.

The oil spills, first reported in June, have yet to be cleaned up. The State Oceanic Administration (SOA) has criticized ConocoPhilips China (COPC), a subsidiary of U.S. energy giant ConocoPhilips, for missing a deadline for cleaning up the spills.

Investigators inspected the spills, located in the bay’s Penglai 19-3 oilfield, on Monday and listened to the COPC’s report regarding the company’s latest cleanup efforts. They also discussed ecological compensation for the spills.

The COPC admitted that ten oil leak sources have been found within 15 meters of the oilfield. A government ocean surveyor spotted three oil belts in the area.

The oil spills have been seen spreading to beaches in north China’s Hebei and Liaoning provinces. The spills have been blamed for losses in the provinces’ tourism and aquatic farming industries.

Oil-drilling operations in the field are jointly conducted by COPC and the China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC), the country’s largest offshore oil producer.

Xinhua

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