Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Why did Finland send 3 ships to the Estonian territorial waters to do what? Who paid for it? Why? Success - no succes - failure!

There once was a high officer (and still is), in the Environmental Authority in Finland who said publicly: " If ever in an oil spill disaster the oil reaches the beaches, the oil spill cleanup work has failed". The same authority sent out these boats. Their catch was very small, some 5 tons only of some 150 or so tons, the oil is now on the beaches outside Tallinn.
The circumstances in this cleanup process where of course very difficult, but anyway, it was a failure and the said statement is thus profing itself, or?
This equipment we have is it of any use in ice and bad weather? It seems as the equipment is not good, and the people working with it has not been trained properly! Or was this only a training session in which the three ships were sent there, since the Estonian authorities did not ask them to come?

Apparently the hands paying for this small 3 ship crusade again goes deep into the pockets of the ordinary tax payer...or? And almost nothing was accomplished, it was just a 3 ship muscular show off, with an embarressing end! Why?

We do not have any equipment to use in bad weather and icy seas as the oil disaster hits ( neither do we have any equipment in any weather for that matter...). When do we and the authorities see and understand that we have ice and snow for 4-6 months every winter in the Gulf of Finland? We must develop the equipment so that it works even in these adverse conditions! When will the authorities see that the growing number of ships are just the problem, no matter what they carry! We must get enough working, solid equipment - now!

Should we "the people" do something?

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

A lesson in "no knowledge" on salvation of leaking oil carrying vessels...

In memory of the m/s Prestige and the 2002 disaster:

press here to see the background and final disaster of the oil carrying m/s Prestige

It is in Spanish so maybe we learn something more and new...who was involved...who was in political power...who the nature and local people lost...and why!

(the main reasons for this total disaster was of course poor judgement, wrong or no decisions at all and lack of equipment for ex. sea booms etc...!)

Should we learn something?

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Lessons learned and how "oil disaster prevention" best should be done...have we learned?

Lessons learned and how "oil disaster prevention" best should be done...have we learned?
Do we ever learn? We have seen many oil spills, oil disasters etc. Have we or the authorities and companies supplying equipment really come to the same level of understanding how these disaster should be managed? As I see it there is still a long way to go ... why?
Isn´t the cause and goal the same ... a clean environment? Survival of the living nature and in the end our own survival?

First and most important: This is not an annual Finnish National budget issue! The mainframe for the Environmental Action Center just has to be done with whatever money the government has and thats it. Please, it cannot wait!
WAKE UP: Just pay what it costs, or pay much much more for not being prepared at all, get chought with your pants down, since that disaster will come and that cannot then be any budget issue, right? Logic?

Second: The Gulf of Finland is in one way large and in one way narrow, and it is also near the Finnish coast very shallow, with many thousend small islands. We can have large ships with lots of equipment thats ok, but we also have to have lots of smaller ships and boats to spread the booms and do collecting of the oil in various places. These smaller boats are fast and flexible and are much more useful in narrow and shallow waters. We have to have lots of floating pumps and collectors to do the collecting of the oil. And then we also have to have somekind of larger boats/barges with tanks where the collected oil can be stored, so that we dont loose precious time on emptying tanks ashore.

Last: There is no more time. This has to be done now. In my world there cannot be anything like "national budgets", approvals of "economically faesibility studies" or "other rubbish authority tikitalk" and "time consuming mishmash" to delay this project any more. It has to be done now in the year 2006!

If there is a secret list of "oil leaking boat bay dumping areas" that might be so but what is the idea of such a list of places if we dont have any equipment at all to even close the bay or clean up that bay? And that list has to be public, even if it means whatever it means! Logic?

Comment: In the Prestige disaster in 2002 the only correct decision would have been to take the ship into one of the bays on the Atlantic coast of either Portugal or Spain. But, but...what then? They did not have any sea booms to seal it off, neither did they have any equipment to remove the oil, suction devices or brusches or other... so the whole problem was that at that time nobody was prepared for anything...

Have we learned anything? When will we be prepared? Why make any plans if there is no equipment involved in the plan and no equipment stored at the right places, equipment in large enough amounts and responsible and skillfull people who knows what to do and how to use this equipment? The decisions maybe difficult and there is usually not much time to make them!

Should we do something?

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Hello! Why is the EU Commission not doing something? The Finnish boats are now helping the Estonians on "pro bono" basis, fair?

This article tells us about the one problem that should be addressed by the EU Environmantal commissioner and should be dealt with immediately. The problem is that Estonia is reluctant to establish an "Oil Protection Fund" to collect funds from the ships sailing in and out of Estonian harbours and/or waters. They look at this as a form of payment that will lessen their competition ability on the sea trade market.
I say: If we ( Finland and Estonia in this case ) are countries in the EU, the same laws has to be applied on both of us. If one country has cheaper rates on issues like this than its neighbours then someting is really wrong. It just cannot be like that.
The money collected into this fund is then used only to plan and buy equipment for fighting oil spills at sea. So I really hope that mr EU commissioner Stavros Dimas takes this issue seriously and does something about it!

As long as we dont have an EU based European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) base in Porvoo region and Tallinn region, the nations have to come up with the funding themselves to clean any oil spills there are. Now the Finnish government boats are in Estonian waters to try to clean up the oily mess in the ice, not that the Estonian authorities have asked for us to be there, because they dont have any money to pay for it, but because the Finnish government is really scared that the oil will move over into the Finnsih territorial waters and the archipelago, as the ice melts away and the prevailing winds in the spring are from south-west to south. Where is EMSA?

Who believes we can wait till 2011 as the authorities plan this ? See below!

Should we do something?

Why are we in Finland not ready to be responsible and pay what it takes in order to be prepared when the oil disaster comes? It will come!

This article in the Swedish newspaper Hufvudstadsbladet requires that new equipment has to be built and ready for these disasters to come. WWF representative demands that something be done now, when the oil comes up on the shores there is not so much anybody can do. The equipment to be bought that was up to discussion 2 years ago ( August 2004 ) was considered too expensive and was thus not given "green light", well one can discuss what is expensive and what is not for any length of time, but you cannot fight oil spills with your bare hands!

Now that the oil spill from the ship m/s Runner 4 is approaching Naisasaari just outside Tallinn there is no equimpent , no booms, no absorbent, no pumps nothing to take up the oil very close to or on the beaches.
Volunteers have to go there and use "type spoons and barrels" to collect the oil that has come ashore. Is this really the way to do these things in 2006? If the oil would have come our way ie to Porvoo in Finland the situation would have been exactly the same, we dont have any equipment here to stop and collect the oil before it is on the beaches! Oh Boy!

About these issues: can there actually be a price on things like this? Who decides what is that price? With what authority? We are talking about the living nature...does it have anything to say here? Are our bureaucrats really doing the best job they can...or just sitting and getting a too high salary for doing nothing, or at least not the right decisions and right things... at the right time.
That time is NOW!

Should we do something?

The accident happened as I predicted inside my square ( see below ) and now the oil is moving with the winds, wherever they blow!

The map published today in Helsingin Sanomat. Shows the place of the accident, ie. red cross, and where the oil has moved, west. Obsereve: this oil and this panic to clean it up comes from an oil spill of magnitude almost nothing, ie 150 metric tons! What about 10000 -100000 metric tons when oil carrying ships go down! The only thing to get and put in the water as the disaster hits are the " sardines".

Oil in icy waters is not an easy thing to clean up.

The whole story in the news paper Helsingin Sanomat today:

Press on the picture to enlarge it!

The whole story in Helsingin Sanomat press here

Should we do something?

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

The probable and the real thing...which oil spill? where? when? who knows?

Years ago in the good old days in the 70´s one of Swedens best comedians Tage Danielsson had a radio parody on various "probable", "improbable" and other "never to happen" issues. His best one was that the Harrisburg/ Three Mile Island atomic power plant disaster was so improbable to happen that it must not have happened even if it happened, it did or did not, or?
See and read at: The accident at the Three Mile Island Unit 2 (TMI-2) nuclear power plant near Middletown, Pennsylvania, on March 28, 1979
It seems to me as if these lately happened oil spills have much in common with this statement on Harrisburg. Who does really know anything?

To me it seems as we are there again...the "probable" oil leakage from the just sunken aluminium carrying ship m/s Runner 4 is now estimated to be 20-40 metric tons of oil, "but in the ship was said to have 102 metric tons heavy oil, 25 metric tons light oil and 600 metric liter lubricant on board" so where is the rest? And according to daily news this oil spot was observed some 42 kilometers west off the place the ship sunk, or as they say it might have come from an entirely other ship? What? Which ship? When? Who knows? Anybody know? Satellites?
I get even more confused with the reports the authorities give out! And the Estonian authorities have not contacted the Finnish authorities about this sofar?
Here I say: why should they do that they must know by now that we on the Finnish side dont have any equipment whatsoever to fight any oil spills, we just sent everything we had to Denmark to the local
European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) center, lucky them! When will we here get an EMSA center?

Should we do something?

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Suomalainen pelastusalus Merikarhu on todennäköisesti paikantanut uponneen m/s Runner 4´n.

linkki Sanomalehti Kalevan (cr) netti sivuille: Öljyä Suomenlahdella

Onnettomuushetkellä aluksessa oli 102 tonnia raskasta polttoöljyä, 35 tonnia kevyttä polttoöljyä ja 600 litraa voiteluöljyä. Onnettomuuspaikalla on vettä noin 80 metriä eikä hylystä ole vaaraa muille aluksille.

English in brief (be): The Finnish Coast Guard ship m/s Merikarhu has probably located the sunken aluminium cargo ship m/s Runner 4. The ship is said to have 102 metric tons heavy oil, 25 metric tons light oil and 600 metric liter lubricant on board. It is on a depth of 80 meters and does not posess any danger for other ships. Animals? We have to wait and see how many birds, seals and other animlas will die!

Should we do something?

Lamor exporterar utrustning, vad har vi här hemma? Lamor Corp. exports large amounts of equipment, what do we have here?

Originalet skrivet i Borgåbladet av Jaenette Björkqvist 2006-03-10, se sidan:

BBL idag 11.3.2006: press here

På måndag 13 mars åker långtradare med den första heltäckande oljebekämpningsutrustningen iväg från industriområdet i Borgå. Färdens mål är Köpenhamn där utrustningen ska finnas klar ifall det värsta inträffar: en oljekatastrof på Östersjön.

En oljebekämpningsutrustning i Köpenhamn och en i Tolkis ( Tolkis är en så länge endast på ritbordet!!! ds). Lamor och dess underleverantörer i Borgå har haft bråda tider, men på måndag lastas äntligen den första heltäckande oljebekämpningsutrustningen in i långtradarlasten och körs iväg till Danmark.

Oljebekämpningsberedskapen som nu byggs upp för Östersjön är en del av det EU-program för förbättrad maritim säkerhet som kommit igång efter några ödesdigra oljeolyckor i EU-området. European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) konkurrensutsatte för ett par år sedan fyra områden där man anser att det behövs en bättre beredskap också för allvarliga oljekatastrofer. Ett av dem var Finska viken och Östersjön.
Det handlar om lösa enheter som vid behov kan fästas på fem vanliga kommersiella oljefartyg med en kapacitet på mellan 1 800–10 000 kubikmeter. Skulle en stor oljeolycka inträffa kommer oljefartygsflottan småningom att ha en total insamlingskapacitet på 30 000 kubikmeter.

– Det är hundratals gånger billigare att få bort oljan till havs jämfört med då den redan nått land, säger Pekka Eskelinen på Lamor Corp.

"Risken för oljeolyckor utanför Finlands kust ökar i takt med att oljetransporterna ökar"= Det är ju vad denna BLOG handlar om, egen kommentar!

År 1995 fraktades det 20 miljoner ton olja i Finska viken. I fjol, tio år senare, fraktades det 125 miljoner ton och mängden är på uppgång. Riskerna med den ökade trafiken – 200 oljetankers per dag – syns också i antalet utsläpp. I fjol rapporterade miljöministeriet om 48 utsläpp, vilket är 12 fler än året innan. Över hälften av utsläppen inträffade i Finska viken. ( Se kartorna nedan ,ds ).

Riskkalkyler ger desutom vid handen att sannolikheten för en oljekatastrof som involverar mer än 10 000 ton olja ökar med 35 procent för Östersjön och 100 procent för Finska viken fram till år 2015.

English in brief: This is a good start for the whole Baltic region to have a type of EAC ( see below ), in Denmark, but one EAC is an absolute must here in the Porvoo-Neste oil refinery area, for the ever increasing transports on the Finnish Gulf from Russia to Finland, Estonia and further west. This center must be done now immediately! /brief always by myself.

Should we do something?

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Sunken ship m/s Runner 4, causes "probable" oil leakage!

I wrote the other day about " In the night between March 5-6th 2006 2 ships collided in the Gulf of Finland, one of the ships carrying aluminium as cargo sunk, these where fortunately not oil carrying ships! Its closing in.... "

But, the sunken ship has started to leak oil from its tanks...( would you believe???), as far as I know all ships run on oil, light or heavy oil, and if the ship sinks its tanks will sooner or later start leaking and the oil will always come to the surface of the water ( except for atomic powered vessels which causes another sort of disaster ), the winds might come from anywhere, the oil and the ice and everything makes it into a big mess...the Estonian Sea Authority spokeperson Helena Loorents says 7th of March that there is a "probable " oil leakage! Estonian authorities are also asking for help from authorities in Finland to evaluate and possibly to clean it up...but we have almost no equipment for this kind of work...we have not got ourself prepared for anything yet...that has to wait until 2007-2011 budget proposals? How stupid can we/they get?

Could someone tell me what is a "probable oil leakage"? Shall this then "probably" be treated with dispergents and let it sink to the bottom of the Gulf or? It will ( the oil will ) "probably" reappear later somewhere else being carried around with the bottom currents which go into the Gulf of Finland alongside the Estonian coast to the east and then turn and pass the Finnish coastline on their way out. So the oil will most "probably" one day appear here in Finland, somewhere along the coastline, on someones summerplace, "probably" nice?

This oil spill and many more to come cannot wait for a budget in the years to come in 2007-2011 or so. The authorities must act now! Plans have to be made during the year 2006, equipment has to be stored for emergancies in EAC centers, people have to be trained to use the equipment and to fully understand how to act on such disasters as oil disasters are.

If a large disaster occures, take the ship into one preplanned bay and seal the waters off from the gulf, dont let the whole gulf get covered with oil. "More feasible and economic!"

New leadership training is absolutely necessary for this kind of special work.

All this take time, but if we dont start now, it will be too late!

Should we do something?

Monday, March 06, 2006

Kaksi kauppa-alusta kolaroi Suomenlahdella, onneksi eivät öljylastissa! Two ships colliding in the Gulf of Finland, fortunately not oil carrying!

6 maaliskuuta 2006:

Kaksi kauppa-alusta on kolaroinut Suomenlahdella myöhään viime yönä:

Toinen aluksista upposi Viron aluevesillä sattuneessa törmäyksessä. Suomenlahden merivartioston mukaan uponneessa aluksessa oli 14 miehistön jäsentä, jotka pelastettiin venäläiselle jäänmurtajalle.
Uponnut kauppa-alus oli alumiinilastissa ja rekisteröity Dominicaan. Toinen onnettomuudessa mukana ollut alus kärsi merivartioston tietojen mukaan vain vähäisiä vaurioita. Alus purjehtii Maltan lipun alla.
Onnettomuus tapahtui hieman ennen puolta yötä noin 45 kilometrin päässä Suomen rannikolta Vaindlo-majakkasaaren pohjoispuolella. Kummallakaan aluksella ei ollut lastina öljyä.

Merivartiostolla ei ollut toistaiseksi tietoa onnettomuuden syystä.
(Tekijänoikeudet © Kaleva Kustannus Oy)

On vain ajan kysymys koska.....tuulet ovat luoteesta ja kyseessä on öljyä kuljettavat laivat ja rannikkomme, saaremme ja koko hela hoito on ongelmanamme, koska me emme ole varustautuneet ollenkaan.....kun onnettomuuksia ei pitänyt ollenkaan olla, vai pitikö? Ja ne EAC`t? Varastot ja koulutus?

"Merja Huhtala Ympäristöministeriöstä 9.1.2006:
Ympäristöministeriö teettää yhdessä Sitran kanssa konsulttiselvityksen öljyntorjuntakeskuksen taloudellisista toimintaedellytyksistä. Selvityksen pitäisi valmistua helmikuun alkupolella, minkä jälkeen ministeri vie asian vuosien 2007- 2011 kehysbudjettia käsittelevään hallituksen talousriiheen. Vasta jos hanke osoittautuu taloudellisesti kestäväksi ja sille järjestyy rahoitus, ja hankkeelle siis ns. näytetään vihreää valoa, mietitään sellaisia asioita kuin esim. sijoituspaikka."
Mahtaakohan sillä olla enään väliä sitten vuonna 2011 missä EAC on?

"Kävipä peikkomainen flaxi"

Et sillai...

English brief: 2 ships collided in the Gulf of Finland, duringe the night between 5-6 of March 2006, one of the ships sunk, these where fortunately not oil carrying ships!

Its closing in....

Should we do something?

Friday, March 03, 2006

Facts on oilspills and the main oil transport routes and the danger oil transports possess to the environment today and in the very near future:

From the HELCOM homepage facts on oil transports, accidents and deliberately done oil spills:

Above: In the areas marked as yellow and red are the greatest danger is for oil accidents.

Above: These are the places of known oil accidents since 1998.

Above: These are the main oil transport routes and the largest oil harbours, as they will be by the year 2015.

Above: Here are the known deliberately done oil spills since 1998! Who has paid for all this crap to be cleaned up: tax payers of course!?

Above: These are the deliberately done oil spills in 2004 only!
These are not accidental!
How many captains responsible for these spills have been put into jail? How much have these boats or shipping companies paid fines?
Who will do something positive about the whole issue?

Who will start to change the EU legislation? See below my 8 new points: "Environmental Crimes To Do List for the EU Commission and Parliament".

Should we do something?