Petroleiro encalhado causa emergência em Galápagos

Direito de imagem AFP

The government in Ecuador has declared an emergency in the Galapagos islands. A ship carrying petrol which got stuck on the rocks last week may still carry a threat to the island group's plants and animals.

Repórter: Mattia Cabitza

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The petrol tanker became stranded off the island of San Cristobal on Friday. But despite having emptied the ship's cargo, the authorities fear that some remaining pollutants, like motor oil, could spill over and cause environmental damage.

They said they're working to remove the vessel. This is not the first ship accident in the Galapagos. In 2001, another stranded petrol tanker spilled fuel and decimated marine life.

The Galapagos are home to unique animals such as the giant tortoise, the marine iguana and the flightless cormorant. The archipelago is also known for its endemic finches, which were studied in the 1830s by the British scientist Charles Darwin. He went on to publish On the Origin of Species, his revolutionary book on evolution.

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tanker large ship designed to carry gas or liquid

stranded stuck; unable to leave somewhere

cargo things carried by ship, truck, train or plane

vessel large boat or ship

decimated damaged or destroyed a lot of something

iguana a large lizard of tropical America

flightless not able to fly (usually used to describe birds that cannot fly even through they have wings)

endemic very common in a particular place

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