Oil pipe construction delayed to avert environmental threat
ITAR - TASS
30th April 2004
Yuzhno - Sakhalinsk
The Sakhalin Energy company has revised the schedule of building an oil pipeline on the Sakhalin sea shelf so as to reduce negative impact on the population of grey whales that move closer to Sakhalin in summer.
The whales normally living in ocean waters near the Korean peninsula move closer to Sakhalin in summer to feed in their “orchards” on the ocean floor, where a large oil reserve has been prospected. The “Piltun-Astokhskoye” oil and gas deposit, where an oil pumping platform was built, is one of the whales’ favourite harbours.
The oil pipeline should run through deep trenches on the sea bottom deeper than initially planned. In order to make the trenches deeper powerful shells will be used that might frighten off the grey whales whose population is on the verge of extinction.
The Sakhalin Energy Company intends to make additional acoustic research to as to minimize potential damage that might be caused to the whales by special ships that make trenches on the sea bottom. Until the acoustic research is over the oil pipeline will be built in areas where no whales were earlier seen.