- Aug 25, 2022 7:13 pm GMT
The current case of the FSO Safer brings to light a practice that needs to stop. Storing oil in decommissioned tankers has been ongoing for decades. It’s a marketing ploy by oil traders who purchase during periods of low prices and hold onto the oil until demand and prices rise. Craig Pirrong, a finance professor at the University of Houston is quoted in an article appearing in Exploring Hydrocarbon Depletion stating, “It is one of the easy ways to make money” and “a countercyclical source of profit” for big oil companies and traders around the world. But this practice is a danger to the environment with tens of millions of barrels of oil sitting on ships with skeleton crews or none at all for long periods of time. There are times when as much as 100 million barrels of oil are afloat and going nowhere. Each vessel is a potential environmental threat. For that reason alone, not just the ongoing profiteering, the practice should be outlawed.
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