Fuel Spill Update

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

State and federal officials say a $1.7 million salt marsh restoration project along the shore of Pensacola Bay apparently escaped major damage from fuel spilled by a freighter last weekend.

Project GreenShores is under the supervision of the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. It's less than a mile from Pensacola's port, where about 3,000 gallons of a diesel fuel and oil mixture leaked Saturday from the 499-foot Bahamas-flagged Alchiba.

The Coast Guard says the most serious effect is around the port, including 300 feet of grassy shoreline. But that's NOT part of the restoration project.

The freighter was allowed to leave Monday after its owner paid a fine of over $27,000. The company is also paying for cleanup, which continues.

Environmental officials say the restoration project could face another threat from street resurfacing being done along the bay's shore. They're worried asphalt from the resurfacing project may spill into the bay from storm drains.

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