The oil spill resulting from a crack in the MV Wakashio, a Japanese bulk oil carrier which ran aground Mauritius' southeast coast on July 25 is a big threat to the tiny island’s ecotourism, which earned the country around $1.6 billion last year, according to environmental group Greenpeace, says an Al Jazeera report.
The MV Wakashio, owned by the Nagashiki Shipping Company, struck the reef on Mauritius's southeast coast two weeks ago, resulting in a crack around the ship’s hull, where oil seeped through into the ocean and onto Mauritius’ pristine beaches.
Now Greenpeace says the spill is likely to be one of the worst ecological crises Mauritius has ever seen.
"Thousands of species around the pristine lagoons of Blue Bay, Pointe d'Esny and Mahebourg are at risk of drowning in a sea of pollution, with dire consequences for Mauritius's economy, food security and health," Al Jazeera quotes a Greenpeace statement.
The tanker is grounded in what the country’s environment ministry has described as a sensitive zone, with the leaking fuel a catastrophe for the diverse marine life that attracts tourists from around the world.
Mauritius is famous for its pristine beaches which are popular with tourists who flock the country because of its acclaimed conservationist policies.
Picture credit: Eric Villars via AP photo