'I am led to believe that the incident led to a spill of light gas oil, a full and appropriate response from the Harbour Master and the Roads department contained and removed the recoverable oil.
Many thanks to them for their efforts.
I am advised that although cleared, a light sheen reappears on the surface intermittently; this sheen is only a few microns thick and is too thin to be absorbed or effectively contained. The accepted practice in these cases is to allow the sheen to disperse naturally and biodegrade.
The use of dispersants within the 12 mile limit is banned, unless authorised by SEPA, this is because the chemicals are more harmful to wildlife than the oil, particularly in the case of light gas oil.
I am not aware that any wildlife has been poisoned.
If you wish to authorise the use of these chemicals we shall certainly apply them. However I recommend that the most environmentally responsible way is to let the sheen disperse naturally.
In accordance with our policies, the polluter has been advised that they will be invoiced for the cost of the clean up.
The Gurnmeister imagines that the cost of the clean-up will not come cheap and will be an incentive to others to take greater care. It remains to be seen now if SEPA will demand furher action from the Highland Council. If the Gurn hears more we will post the news.
Update 17.34: 'SEPA at this time do not consider that the use of dispersants is appropriate and could prove more harmful to the wildlife present.' SEPA have also spoken with Harbourmaster Alex Taylor who will be undertaking further investigation tomorrow and if further clean up is necessary it will be undertaken. SEPA were also unaware of the incident until informed by Joe Telfer.