Tests show ‘minimal’ water contamination from Elgin leak

Tests on water samples gathered two miles from the Elgin platform gas leak indicate there has been no direct marine contamination from the incident, says the Scottish Parliament. Water and […]

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By Vicky Ellis

Tests on water samples gathered two miles from the Elgin platform gas leak indicate there has been no direct marine contamination from the incident, says the Scottish Parliament.

Water and sediment samples were tested for traces of oil and gas (hydrocarbon) pollution at the Marine Scotland Science laboratory in Aberdeen.

Earlier this month TOTAL evacuated its Elgin platform in the North Sea after it discovered a gas leak in the Elgin field and its efforts to stem the gas flow are ongoing.

Scottish Environment Secretary Richard Lochhead said: “I’m pleased that chemical analysis of water and sediment samples is now available, which adds to the sensory fish testing work completed last week. All data gathered to date continues to demonstrate that the effects on the marine environment of the Elgin gas leak are so far minimal.”

Some traces of oil-based hydrocarbons were found in seawater samples but these are believed to be caused by other shipping or industrial activities.

The Secretary added: “However, as the leak is ongoing, we must remain vigilant and I’ve asked Marine Scotland to continue to play a full part in assessing the situation, including further environmental monitoring.”