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SEPA update 21 February: Finnart Ocean Terminal pipeline, Argyll and Bute

Date published: 21 February 2024

Environmental incident

SEPA continues to support the multi-agency response following a small quantity of light crude oil surfacing from an underground pipeline in the area local to Finnart Ocean Terminal, Argyll and Bute.

Shona McConnell, SEPA Senior Manager – Environmental Performance, said:

“SEPA continues to closely monitor the site to ensure the environment is protected. Our regulatory staff are in ongoing discussions with Petroineos and their contractors to ensure they are clear on our expectations and plans are appropriate. 

“Now that the pipeline repair solution has been identified, the focus is to ensure appropriate remediation of the site. The preferred remediation options will be identified via a detailed ground investigation process. SEPA will provide expert comment before any remediation is undertaken. 

“We have been regularly monitoring the water environment since 3rd January 2024 and will continue to do so until we are satisfied that clean-up is satisfactorily concluded. While minor, localised environmental impacts have been recorded within the containment area, no significant impact has been detected with respect to water quality, migratory fish or other wildlife within the Fruin Water or Loch Lomond.  

“We remain confident that the containment measures are performing well, especially considering the significant rainfall events experienced in January and February, including Storm Isha.”

Notes to editor:

The exact scale of the leak and extent of contamination will not be known until ground investigations are complete. At this point we have no information to suggest it is anything other than a relatively small-scale leak.