Russia’s Nornickel reports another Arctic fuel spill

About 45 tonnes of aviation fuel leaked from a pipeline near the Arctic port of Dudinka.

By Maxim Rodionov, Reuters - July 13, 2020
The logo of Russia’s miner Norilsk Nickel (Nornickel) is seen on a board at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum 2017 (SPIEF 2017) in St. Petersburg, Russia, June 1, 2017. (Sergei Karpukhin / Reuters File Photo)

MOSCOW — Russian mining giant Norilsk Nickel said on Sunday that around 45 tonnes of aviation fuel had leaked from its pipeline in the Arctic.

Arctic environment security has been in the spotlight at Nornickel’s assets since another leak of 21,000 tonnes of diesel from Nornickel’s power plant near the city of Norilsk on May 29.

“A pipeline owned by Norilsktransgaz was depressurized while pumping aviation fuel in the area of Tukhard settlement,” Nornickel said in a statement.

“According to the preliminary data, as a result of the depressurization, which lasted about 15 minutes, there was a spill of up to 44.5 tonnes of fuel.”

Earlier Nornickel’s subsidiary Norilsktransgaz estimated the amount of leaked fuel at 20 tonnes.

Tukhard settlement is situated some 70 kilometers (43 miles) from Nornickel’s Arctic port of Dudinka on the Enisey river.

Norilsk said it was conducting an internal investigation and has informed the emergency ministry.

“Fuel pumping works have been suspended and all possible measures are being taken to speed up the collection of spilled fuel,” it said.