Positive Environment News

Petrobras to appeal $180 mln oil spill ruling

Date: 25-Feb-02
Country: BRAZIL

A state court ruled last week in favor of a Fishermen Federation of Rio de Janeiro, ordering Petrobras to pay 424 million reais ($180 million) to fishermen affected by the spill of 340,000 gallons (1.3 million liters) of crude into Guanabara Bay through a ruptured pipeline.

Petrobras, which has a history of oil spills, was fined around $30 million in total for the January 2000 spill, in which oil coated scores of birds, fish and other water creatures, killing many.

Petrobras, which said in a statement it would appeal in a matter of 15 days, noted it had paid 6.7 million reais ($2.8 million) to nearly 10,000 fishermen in the region and distributed food to them after the spill.

Court officials said the fishermen now wanted additional compensatory damages. Environmental experts say the spill's impact in the bay's marine life would be felt for at least 10 years.

© Thomson Reuters 2002 All rights reserved

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