An oil leak from a stricken ship has endangered a reef and a UNESCO world heritage site in the Solomon Islands.

On February 5, 2019, the Solomon Trader ran aground in Kangava Bay at Rennell Island, the Solomon Islands. Unfortunate subsequent reports have indicated that an estimated 100 metric tons of fuel oil has leaked from the stricken ship.

Experts fear there is more bad news to come, and the ship could potentially leak a further 600 metric tons of fuel oil. So far the oil has spread about 5-6 Km/~3-4 miles and has started arriving onshore.

According to the director of the Solomon Islands Disaster Management Office Loti Yates:

“There are dead fish and crabs and all that. The fumes that [are] coming out from the oil [are] also affecting communities and I just had a report it’s also impacting on the chicken and birds.”

Efforts are underway to control the leak and mitigate the effects of the spill so far.