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Russian investigators launch criminal case over oil spill in the Nenets Autonomous Okrug

Source: TASS

An emergency situation has been declared in the area around the Kharyaginskoye oil field in Russia’s far-northern Nenets Autonomous Okrug due to a recent oil spill, the state news agency TASS reports.

The spill took place on October 17, after an oil pipeline belonging to the company Lukoil depressurized during technical work. The total volume of the oil spill is at least 0.9 cubic meters (that’s 900 liters or about 238 gallons of fuel). 

Russia’s Investigative Committee has launched a criminal case for the violation of environmental protections during the performance of works.

More than 17,000 accidents involving oil spills took place in Russia in 2019. According to a recent report from the Russian investigative outlet I-Stories (Vazhnye Istorii), information about less than one percent of these accidents actually makes it into the press; extraction companies even manage to hide many of these incidents from law enforcement agencies.

The biggest accident Russia witnessed this year was a 21,000 ton fuel spill in Norilsk. The country’s Natural Resources Ministry estimated the damage at 148 billion rubles (approximately $1.9 billion)

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