Philippines to Ban Single-Hull Vessels

Monday, January 28, 2008
The Philippines will ban single-hull oil tankers from its waters from April, two years earlier than planned, after the worst oil spill in the country's history and a separate leak in South Korea. Vessels carrying "black" petroleum products such as crude oil and bunker fuel won't be allowed to dock at ports from April 1 without a double hull, said Transportation Undersecretary Len Bautista in a phone interview from Manila. The single-hull crude oil supertanker Hebei Spirit caused the worst spill in South Korea's history last month after it was struck by a crane causing it to lose 66,000 barrels of crude oil, about 1/3 the size of the Exxon Valdez spill of 1989. In August 2006, the tanker Solar 1 leaked 2.19 million litres of marine fuel, killing marine life and fouling the coastline of the Philippines's Guimaras islands. The country has yet to schedule a ban on single-hull tankers that ship gasoline, jet fuel and other refined petroleum products. At least one crude-oil tanker, the Atora, is sailing toward a Philippine port. The double-hull carrier built in 1991 is due to arrive at Bataan January 26, according to AISLive on Bloomberg. Two double-hull refined petroleum tankers, Petro Celine and Kirana Dwitya, are also sailing for the country's ports. Source: Bloomberg

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