Mexico City: Mexican environmental authorities are demanding that state oil company Petroleos Mexicanos clean up a crude spill that occurred when a loading buoy sank nearly two weeks ago and polluted six beaches.
The sinking of the buoy (used to load crude onto tankers in deep water) happened off the coast of the southern state of Oaxaca, near the Salina Cruz refinery in the Isthmus of Tehuantepec.
Media reported Thursday that a boat collided with the buoy because it lacked signaling lights, causing it to sink and spill the crude it was storing.
Mexico's environmental protection agency, Profepa, instructed Pemex to immediately take steps "to prevent crude from continuing to spread off the coasts of fishing communities in the state of Oaxaca".
Environment Secretary Rafael Elvira Quesada criticized the response of Pemex representatives to the spill.
"There was a delay on the part of the local Pemex official in charge in responding to the emergency; the volume of crude contained in the buoy has spread, which reflects scant willingness to care for the environment," Elvira Quesada said.
The official said the important thing is not the volume of crude spilled but its environmental impact.
First Published: Saturday, August 25, 2012, 14:12