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Oil Pipeline Spills 8,000 Barrels of Crude in Peruvian Amazon
Approximately 8,000 barrels (336,000 gallons) of crude oil spilled from a severed pipeline into the Peruvian Amazon on Tuesday night, according to state-owned oil company Petroperu.
In a press release, Petroperu said its Norperuano pipeline was cut by members of the Mayuriaga indigenous community in the Loreto region in an act of "sabotage" and prevented technicians from repairing the pipe and containing the release.
The four-decades-old pipeline transports crude from Amazonian oil fields to Petroperu's coastal refineries.
"We could face an environmental catastrophe," Beatriz Alva, a manager with Petroperu, told channel N television (via AFP).
After the oil reached the Mayuriaga River, company chief James Atkins described the potential ecological damage as "tremendous and irreparable," teleSUR reported.
Environmental regulator (OEFA) is waiting on police and prosecutors to verify the damages and determine culpability, according to a statement published by teleSUR.
The Norperuano pipeline has a history of spill incidents. More than 20,000 barrels of petroleum have spilled from the pipe in 15 protest attacks in just the last two years, Reuters reported, citing data OEFA. Another 5,600 barrels were released from corrosion or operative failures.
Mayuriaga community leaders have not immediately issued any comments to the media about the latest leak.
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EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
At EcoWatch, our team knows that changing personal habits and taking actions that contribute to a better planet is an ongoing journey. Earth Day, happening on April 22, is a great reminder for all of us to learn more about the environmental costs of our behaviors like food waste or fast fashion.
To offer readers some inspiration this Earth Day, our team rounded up their top picks for films to watch. So, sit back and take in one of these documentary films this Earth Day. Maybe it will spark a small change you can make in your own life.
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