Friday, 11 February 2011

Prestige Oil Spill

il spills, a type of marine pollution characterized as sea-based pollution, receive attention because of the immediate economic and ecological damage they inflict on surrounding communities.

Research about the Prestige oil spill contributes to our understanding of short and long term ecological problems associated with large scale oil spills.
On November 13, 2002, the oil tanker tanker Prestige sunk off the coast of Northwest Spain, spilling 64,000 tons of oil that affected French and Spanish coastal regions.
The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) published a study on the spill's short term ecological consequences, noting a decrease in the population of inter-tidal animals and fishery production for the region. Additionalresearch showed high concentrations of heavy metals in the affected coastal wetlands.
High seabird mortality rates are associated with major oil spills, with both oil ingestion and oil covered feathers and skin cited as contributing factors.
Approximately 20,000 birds died as a result of the spill, andpathological studies conducted after the fact showed dehydration and exhaustion as the primary mortality factors. Oil on the birds' feathers and skin, weighed down their bodies and lowered their body temperatures to a point where they lacked strength to move from the oil spill area. Dehydration was probably aggravated by diarrhea caused by oil ingestion.
© 2003-2009. Patricia A. Michaels. All rights reserved.