Oil ex­plo­ration in Sri Lanka

Southasia - - ON RECORD - J. P. Ran­gani, Ham­ban­tota, Sri Lanka

Of­fer­ing its off­shore blocks for oil and gas ex­plo­ration, the Sri Lankan gov­ern­ment has been lur­ing global oil com­pa­nies to carry out ex­plo­ration ac­tiv­i­ties in the Man­nar Basin, an area off the north­ern coast. This move will help them meet the energy de­mand of the coun­try for a longer pe­riod. How­ever, the oil and gas ex­plo­ration oper­a­tions in the re­gion may put the en­vi­ron­ment at risk. In fact, oil spills fre­quently oc­cur, mostly dur­ing the trans­porta­tion of oil from the on­shore plat­form to on­shore fa­cil­i­ties, which have ad­verse ef­fects on the marine en­vi­ron­ment. The chances of ac­ci­den­tal oil leak­ages from pipe­lines and oil tankers are also high. Con­sid­er­ing the en­vi­ron­ment haz­ards cre­ated by oil drilling and trans­porta­tion ac­tiv­i­ties, it is nec­es­sary to en­sure the over­all pro­tec­tion of the en­vi­ron­ment and take vi­able mea­sures to pre­vent pos­si­ble leak­ages.

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