Russia’s Nornickel reports another fuel leak in Arctic

A still image taken from a handout video footage made available 04 June 2020 by the Russian Investigative Committee shows an investigator working at the site of the accident at a heat and power station operated by Norilsk-Taimyr Energy Company or NTEK (Nornickel's subsidiary) in Norilsk, Russia. About 20,000 tonnes of oil products leaked on 29 May 2020 and soiled the waters of Ambarnaya and Daldykan rivers after an accident at a heat and power station, a Norilsk Nickel subsidiary, in the industrial city of Norilsk located above the Arctic Circle, reports state. EPA-EFE/RUSSIAN INVESTIGATIVE COMMITTEE HANDOUT

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Russian mining giant Norilsk Nickel said on Sunday that around 45 tonnes of aviation fuel had leaked from its pipeline in the Arctic.

Arctic environment security has been in the spotlight at Nornickel’s assets since another leak of 21,000 tonnes of diesel from Nornickel’s power plant near the city of Norilsk on May 29.

“A pipeline owned by Norilsktransgaz was depressurized while pumping aviation fuel in the area of Tukhard settlement,” Nornickel said in a statement.

“According to the preliminary data, as a result of the depressurization, which lasted about 15 minutes, there was a spill of up to 44.5 tonnes of fuel.”

Earlier Nornickel’s subsidiary Norilsktransgaz estimated the amount of leaked fuel at 20 tonnes.

Tukhard settlement is situated some 70 kms (43 miles) from Nornickel’s Arctic port of Dudinka on the Enisey river.

Norilsk said it was conducting an internal investigation and has informed the emergency ministry.

“Fuel pumping works have been suspended and all possible measures are being taken to speed up the collection of spilled fuel,” it said.

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