RWS & ILT Bonaire denies BOPEC permission to discharge oil

Kralendijk -The Human Environment and Transport Inspectorate’ (ILT) has completed the transfer of the heavy fuel from the old BOPEC tanks on Bonaire to two renovated tanks on the 7th of December 2020. These two tanks meet the standards and the fire-extinguishing system on these tanks has been repaired, tested, and approved. This eliminates the two greatest environmental risks.

BOPEC submitted a request to the Department of Public Works (RWS) on the 11th of December 2020 for the removal of the oil by tanker in order to sell it. The request was submitted to the Department of Public Works because the pier is covered by the RWS permit “Wet maritiem beheer BES”. Since the oil needs to be pumped to the pier over land using pipelines, the removal of the oil also requires permission from ILT.

BOPEC submitted additional information to be assessed at the request of RWS and ILT on the 11th of January 2021. Both RWS and ILT concluded that the BOPEC installations do not meet the permit requirements and that the request cannot be approved for this reason. The risks involved in removing the oil in the current poor maintenance condition are simply too great.

For this reason, RWS rejected the request by BOPEC in consultation with ILT on the 19th of January 2021.

Subsequently, the same day BOPEC filed an objection against the rejection of the request. RWS will announce as soon as possible whether this objection from BOPEC will lead to an amendment to the decision.

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