CAN’T CLEAN UP OIL? CLEAN UP TIRES INSTEAD!
Diver hopes Husky Oil will take interest in his mission because of historic oil spill
In light of the SeaRose oil spill last month, a Twillingate-born diver is hoping to bring his conservation mission to Husky Energy.
This year Shawn Bath devoted himself to the Clean Harbours Initiative, his one-man diving operation to remove hundreds of tires, plastics and ghosts nets from the Atlantic waters of Newfoundland and Labrador. Bath says he wants to keep the momentum going through the winter, but he’s in need of a major funding investment to continue his efforts during these colder months.
On Nov. 16, Husky Energy’s SeaRose platform leaked around 250,000 litres of crude oil into the ocean, the largest spill in the province’s history. Since then, the company has not given an update on if the spill can be cleaned. But, as reported in The Telegram on Nov. 21, flyovers of the spill area appear to show that the oil is either underwater or has dissipated and clean-up efforts are highly unlikely.
With this news in mind, Bath reached out to Husky Energy with a prospect — if the company cannot recover the oil that was lost, his Clean Harbours Initiative could clean-up the equivalent of that oil in rubber tires.
Bath sees it as an opportunity to grow his environmental mission and help the company’s public image during this difficult time.
“If we got the right funding we can put a five-man crew in the water every day,” he said. “With good weather, we could easily take out a hundred tires a day. That wouldn’t be long adding up to the equivalent of what Husky Oil lost on the 16th of November.”
According to Bath, it takes 26 litres of oil to make one standard car tire, making 250,000 litres of oil equivalent to 9,615 standard car tires.
To hire a crew and have the proper equipment to do these dives during the winter months, Bath says he would need $250,000 to clear this number of tires out of the ocean. With a five-man crew, he expects it would take around six months to remove nearly 10,000 tires from the water.
“We wouldn’t be able to do it without Husky’s help,” he said. “It’d be good for them, showing they helped out a local guy who had a solution.
“If we can get this kind of money behind us, 20 years from now there could hundreds of thousands of tires and ghost nets taken out of the ocean.”
Thus far, Bath has only had initial correspondence with Husky Energy via email, with his request forwarded to their environmental department. He is hoping to have a meeting with them in the near future.
The Central Voice reached out to Husky Energy for comment but they did not respond by deadline.