Last weekend, an oil platform located in the North Sea suffered an oil leak. Environmental researchers say that the leak has had no discernable impact on the local wildlife including seabirds and fish. Nevertheless, according to reports in Aftenposten, the leak has ignited protests against the platform operator StatoilHydro.
The Statfjord A installation had to evacuate its workers on Saturday when it sprung a leak. On Monday, production remained at a standstill.
StatoilHydro’s Lars Petter Lundahl said that production would not resume until the leaking shaft had been completely cleaned. The pipe leaked oil from one of the platform’s legs, but that oil did not pollute the sea.
Statfjord A processes its own oil and oil from two other installations. While the platform undergoes cleaning, oil from the other two installations will be diverted to the Gullfaks A installation for handling and shipping.
Labour groups have accused StatoilHydro of inadequately maintaining the platform and warn that there may be spills again in the future, but the company strongly defends it safety and maintenance record.
In addition, questions have been raised as to the safety of workers and the safety of the environment by the company’s operations in the North Sea. The leaking platform is almost 30 years old and has had two leaks in the past six months.