A total of 50 m3 of contaminated hydrocarbon soil have been removed from last February 6 until this Tuesday, February 20, 2018 in the sector of the Virgin of Papallacta, of the Cayambe-Coca National Park, reported Fernando Benalcázar, deputy manager of Security , Health and Environment of Petroecuador.
In this area, at kilometer 24 of the Pifo Papallacta highway, an oil slick was detected on February 6.
The cause of the spill was a clandestine connection to the 26-inch-diameter pipeline of the Transecuadorian Pipeline System (SOTE), for the theft of crude oil. Benalcázar said it is “impossible” to know how much oil was stolen, because it is unknown from what date this clandestine operation worked.
In that place 16 workers of Petroecuador work, in the removal and cleaning of the affected area, which covers an extension of 1 500 to 1 700 square meters. Because it is a protected area, it cannot be accessed with machinery, so the work has been carried out manually and will last between four and five more weeks. (I)