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In pics | Stranded ship leaks oil off Mauritius coast; residents struggle to contain environmental damage

Fuel spilling from a Japanese bulk carrier that ran aground on a reef in Mauritius two weeks ago is creating an ecological disaster. The spill represents a danger for the country of 1.3 million people that relies heavily on tourism and has been hurt by travel restrictions caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

August 10, 2020 / 03:41 PM IST
An estimated 1 ton of oil from the Japanese ship's cargo of 4 tons has already escaped into the sea. Workers were seeking to stop more oil from leaking, but with high winds and rough seas there were reports of new cracks to the ship's hull. Thousands of students, environmental activists and residents of Mauritius working round the clock trying to reduce the damage to the Indian Ocean Island from an oil spill after a ship ran aground on a coral reef. (Gwendoline Defente/EMAE via AP)
An estimated one ton of oil from the Japanese ship's cargo of 4 tons has already escaped into the sea. Workers were seeking to stop more oil from leaking, but with high winds and rough seas there were reports of new cracks to the ship's hull. Thousands of students, environmental activists and residents of Mauritius working round the clock trying to reduce the damage to the Indian Ocean Island. (Image: Gwendoline Defente/EMAE via AP)
Satellite images show a dark slick spreading in the turquoise waters near wetlands. The Indian Ocean island of Mauritius has declared a “state of environmental emergency.” The spill represents a danger for the country of 1.3 million people that relies heavily on tourism and has been hurt by travel restrictions caused by the coronavirus pandemic.(Gwendoline Defente/EMAE via AP)
Satellite images show a dark slick spreading in the turquoise waters. The Indian Ocean island of Mauritius has declared a state of environmental emergency. The spill represents a danger for the country of 1.3 million people that relies heavily on tourism and has been hurt by travel restrictions caused by the coronavirus pandemic. (Image: Gwendoline Defente/EMAE via AP)
In this satellite image provided by 2020 Maxar Technologies on August 7, an aerial view of oil leaking from the MV Wakashio, a bulk carrier ship that recently ran aground off the southeast coast of Mauritius. (2020 Maxar Technologies via AP)
In this satellite image provided by 2020 Maxar Technologies on August 7, an aerial view of oil leaking from the MV Wakashio, a bulk carrier ship that recently ran aground off the southeast coast of Mauritius. (Image: 2020 Maxar Technologies via AP)
In this satellite image provided by 2020 Maxar Technologies on August 7, an aerial view of the MV Wakashio, a bulk carrier ship that recently ran aground off the southeast coast of Mauritius. (2020 Maxar Technologies. via AP)
Another satellite image of the MV Wakashio, a bulk carrier ship that recently ran aground off the southeast coast of Mauritius. (Image: 2020 Maxar Technologies. via AP)
This photo provided by French government shows oil leaking from the MV Wakashio, a bulk carrier ship that recently ran aground off the southeast coast of Mauritius, August 9. (Gwendoline Defente/EMAE via AP)
This photo provided by the French government shows oil leaking from the MV Wakashio. (Image: Gwendoline Defente/EMAE via AP)
This photo provided by the French Defense Ministry shows a French military transport aircraft carrying pollution control equipment after landing in Mauritius Island, August 9. (Gwendoline Defente/EMAE via AP)
This photo provided by the French Defence Ministry shows a French military transport aircraft carrying pollution control equipment after landing in Mauritius Island on August 9. (Image: Gwendoline Defente/EMAE via AP)
People on a boat evaluate damage from fuel leaking from a ship off shore that ran aground in the ocean, August 7 in Mauritius. (@gregrouxel via AP)
People on a boat evaluate damage from fuel leaking from a ship off shore that ran aground in the ocean on August 7 in Mauritius. (Image: @gregrouxel via AP)
Fuel is in the ocean leaking from a ship, rear right that ran aground, August 7, in Mauritius. (@gregrouxel via AP)
Mauritius has declared a state of environmental emergency and pleaded for international help. (Image: @gregrouxel via AP)
Oil leaking from the MV Wakashio, a bulk carrier, August 7. Anxious residents of the Indian Ocean island nation of Mauritius are stuffing fabric sacks with sugar cane leaves to create makeshift oil spill barriers as tons of fuel leak from a grounded ship. (Eric Villars via AP)
Oil leaking from the MV Wakashio, a bulk carrier, on August 7. Anxious residents of the Indian Ocean island nation of Mauritius are stuffing fabric sacks with sugar cane leaves to create makeshift oil spill barriers as tons of fuel leak from a grounded ship. (Image: Eric Villars via AP)
Oil polluting the foreshore on the eastern side of Mauritius, after it leaked from the MV Wakashio, a bulk carrier ship that recently ran aground off the southeast coast of Mauritius, August 9. (Sunil Dowarkasing via AP)
Oil polluting the foreshore on the eastern side of Mauritius, after it leaked from the MV Wakashio, a bulk carrier ship that recently ran aground off the southeast coast of Mauritius on August 9. (Image: Sunil Dowarkasing via AP)
Oil polluting the foreshore on the eastern side of Mauritius, after it leaked from the MV Wakashio, August 9. (Sunil Dowarkasing via AP)
Oil polluting the foreshore on the eastern side of Mauritius, after it leaked from the MV Wakashio, on August 9. (Image: Sunil Dowarkasing via AP)
This photo provided by the French Defense Ministry shows oil leaking from the MV Wakashio, a bulk carrier ship that recently ran aground off the southeast coast of Mauritius, August 9. (Gwendoline Defente/EMAE via AP)
This photo provided by the French Defence Ministry shows oil leaking from the MV Wakashio off the southeast coast of Mauritius. (Image: Gwendoline Defente/EMAE via AP)
Oil polluting the foreshore on the eastern side of Mauritius, after it leaked from the MV Wakashio, August 9. (Sunil Dowarkasing via AP)
The oil spill is polluting the foreshore on the eastern side of Mauritius. (Image: Sunil Dowarkasing via AP)
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