Syria’s largest refinery Oil Spill is spreading across the Mediterranean Sea, and could reach the island of Cyprus by Wednesday. Officials said last week that a tank filled with 15,000 tons of fuel had been leaking since August 23 at a thermal power plant in the Syrian coastal city of Baniyas. They said they had been able to bring it under control.
A Satellite imagery analysis by Orbital EOS shows that the Oil Spill was larger than originally thought, covering around 309 square miles in an area around the same size as New York City. The company said that the oil slick was around 7 kilometers from the Cypriot coast.
The Cypriot Department of Fisheries and Marine research said that depending on a simulation of the Oil Spill movements and meteorological data, the slick could reach the Apostolos Andreas Cape in the next 24 hours. The department posted the statement at around 4 a.m. ET on Tuesday. It also said it would be willing to assist in tackling the spill.Apostles Andreas Cape is in the Turkish-controlled north of the divided island and sits just over 80 miles west of Syria’s Baniyas. Photos circulating on social media for more than a week have shown the oil slick along with the coastal areas of Syria’s Baniyas and Jableh, and locals have warned of a potential threat to marine life.
A resident in Baniyas said that the Oil Spill, on condition of anonymity, covered much of the coast. The resident also added that people did not need this, it is already hard to make a living here and this certainly affected the lives of many families and made them lose their income.