Wednesday, 16 January 2013 | Written by Shetland News.


..... Cooper said Monday’s incident was a sign of the times and the oil industry had to do all in its power to protect the marine environment.

“What we have is kit that is coming up to be 40 years old and while there is a very good record in terms of pollution, we are at the stage where there are going to be more downtime losses with defective pipelines,” he said.

“I am concerned that if there is any significant pollution, Shetland’s seafood sector would be very heavily impacted, and let’s be clear about it, this is worth £340 million a year.

“Full marks to the industry about how this has been handled over the years but we have some quite ageing kit operating in very hostile waters and who knows what might happen next time. The industry has to be vigilant.”

Shetland’s other concern is that any loss of production on Brent affects the local authority’s income from running the port at Sullom Voe.

“Ten days of lost production on Brent means one less tanker and we need every tanker we can get,” Cooper said.

“We want the terminal to continue to operate, we want to see safe production in the East Shetland Basin and we want our seafood sector to draw fish from a pristine environment.”