Sanaa: The UN is still working on raising funds to prevent a massive oil spill from the derelict Safer oil tanker in the Red Sea off Yemen, and the plan still needs about $16 million, a government official said here.
“The UN is getting close to receiving enough funds to reach the $80 million target to salvage oil from the rotting Safer tanker that’s falling apart off,” the official told Xinhua news agency.
“Yemen’s private sector, particularly the multinational HSA Group, announced that it will donate $1.2 million to fund the UN’s salvage operation,” he added.
The official reaffirmed the government’s full support for the UN efforts aimed at pumping more than 1 million barrels of oil from the 45-year-old Safer tanker and stopping an environmental catastrophe in the Red Sea.
In June, the UN launched the crowdfunding campaign to avert oil spill from the decaying FSO Safer that is moored in the Red Sea north of the port city of Hodeidah.
The decaying, dilapidated supertanker has been described as a “floating time-bomb” that risks causing an explosion or an oil spill four times as disastrous as the 1989 Exxon Valdez incident in the Red Sea.
The Safer has been moored in the Red Sea since 1988.
The Houthis have been blockading UN efforts to inspect and maintain the vessel after the war between the group and the Yemeni government began in 2014.