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Oil spill chokes Canary coastal paradise

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Oil spill chokes Canary coastal paradise
Over 100 divers, municipal workers and volunteers have been helping to clear up the damaging oil spill since Wednesday. Photo: YouTube
10:04 CEST+02:00
An oil spill thought to have been caused by a passing ship has destroyed over a kilometre of coastline on the Spanish island of Gran Canaria, just weeks after Spain announced it would allow gas and oil drilling off the Canary coast.

The area affected, near El Cabrón beach in the east of Gran Canaria, is popular with divers for its diverse marine wildlife.

Canary authorities were alerted by locals on Wednesday afternoon that several oil stains had appeared at sea, spanning over a kilometre of coastline, Spain’s national broadcaster RTVE reported.

Although the cause hasn’t been officially confirmed, it is thought a ship located in international waters between Gran Canaria and the neighbouring island of Fuerteventura cleaned out its bilge into the sea.

Over 100 divers, municipal workers and volunteers have been helping to clear up the damaging oil spill since Wednesday.

The news comes just a month after The Spanish government gave oil giant Repsol the green light to explore for oil and gas off the coast of the Canary Islands.

“The spill at El Cabrón is a minute example of the potential dangers we face with the oil exploration,” Canary President Paulino Rivero announced.

READ ALSO: “Oil drilling could destroy Canary tourism” 

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