There has been a spill of floating oil from the LUKOIL-Komi Company's oil well near Usinsk in Komi. The community of the Save Pechora Committee Environmental Movement on vk.com reports that.
In the morning of May 26, activists were told about mud-colored water in a stream near Usinsk. Ekaterina Dyachkova, a deputy of the Komi State Council and a member of the Save Pechora Committee, arrived at the site, took water samples, and found the source of the contamination. It was an underground "geyser" near well No. 447, owned by LUKOIL-Komi. The activist reported the incident to the Ministry of Emergency Situations’ Directorate. The Investigating Committee of the region and the Prosecutor's Office of Usinsk organized checks on this fact.
The LUKOIL-Komi Company explained to 7x7 that a natural phenomenon called cratering, which is a spontaneous outcrop, had been recorded in a forest 20 km from Usinsk. The company noted that experts considered the risen rock to be low-toxic.
The Ministry of Natural Resources of the Komi Republic confirmed to TASS that this was a spill of floating oil from the well. Officials noted that they were clarifying the causes and area of contamination, specialists were working onsite, and a cross-agency commission was on the way to them.
Ivan Ivanov, the chairman of the Save Pechora Committee, suggested in an interview with 7x7 that the experts should have checked the accident site for the presence of salts, rather than petroleum products:
«The stream looks like there is either reservoir water or drill fluid in it, but it has been flowing for a long time. Most likely this is reservoir water.»
Svetlana Rodionova, the head of the Russian Federal Service for Supervision of Natural Resource Usage, said on Instagram that samples taken from the site had indicated the absence of oil.
The last major oil spill that affected the region occurred at LUKOIL’s oil field in the Nenets Autonomous Okrug on May 11. Oil has got into the Kolva, Usa, and Pechora rivers because of this. A regime of emergency has been imposed in three districts of the Komi Republic. Environmentalists of the Save Pechora Committee compared the oil spill to one that happened in October 2020 and called the residents of Komi for speaking out against the "uncivilized" oil production in the republic. One-person pickets were held in the Komi Republic and Arkhangelsk Oblast. A case was initiated against the participants of the last action.
The LUKOIL-Komi Company reported about 100 tons of spilled petroleum products. But, according to social activists, oil workers possibly lowered this number at least four times. After the accident, Vladimir Uyba, the head of the Komi Republic, visited residents of the villages of Kolva and Mutny Materik, who were outraged by another accident. At the second meeting, in response to a resident's comment about the necessity to contact President Vladimir Putin, he said, "I am Putin for you."
7x7’s special correspondent Maxim Polyakov has been to Kolva to learn about life in the village which oil film passes by almost every year.