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Oil spill monitoring
- Eric Sussenbach,

Director GIS4C

In August 2012 an extensive fuel spill has fouled a stretch of shoreline and oiled pink flamingos and other wildlife in a nature preserve in at Jan Kok on Curaçao. GIS4C volunteered to offer their services to the Research Institute Carmabi, who is leading the cleanup process in the area.

The area of Jan Kok is a natural preserve which is the habitat for pink flamingos, crabs, lizards and many other type of wildlife.  This oil spill also affected the mangroves. It remains to be seen whether they will survive this. Approximately 2.76 hectare has certainly been stricken. A rough estimate is that the actual area of mangroves affected by the oil could be five to six times larger. The black mangroves and their young plants appear to suffer the most”, said Mark Vermeij, Scientific director of Carmabi. He emphasized that mangroves are of specific importance for the ecology and the economy.

GIS4C conducted to flights with the Gatewing X100 above the area near the shore. The advantage of the Gatewing X100 is that it’s very accurately imaging the areas near the shore that are very hard to reach by foot. Within half a day Carmabi got a clear picture of the impact of the oil spill and the damage it already caused.

Scientific director of Carmabi, Mark Vermeij, is very pleased with the help of many volunteers and the orthophoto’s made with the X100 by GIS4C. These state-of-the art technologies help to get a clear operational picture of what is going on and accomplish better insight in which steps to take.

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