Category Archives: Port/Shipping Activity

The Coast Guard announced on Friday that they have completed their 10-day clean-up of an oil spill that was first reported on October 20, 2009.  The spill impacted Sullivan’s Island, Fort Sumter, Folly Beach, Kiawah Island, Seabrook Island and Edisto Island.

An investigation is still underway to determine the responsible party; we will make sure to keep you all informed as we hear more details.

For the Coast Guard’s press release on the matter click here.

An unidentified sheen was spotted from IOP Marina

An unidentified sheen was spotted at the IOP Marina. Photo by: Erich Schmidt

Earlier this week, Charleston Waterkeeper received a call from a motor yacht detailer working on a boat at the Isle of Palms Marina.  The citizen reported a large, visible sheen covering a large area in between docks at the marina.  According to his details, a strong smell of diesel fuel was detected around the area.  Upon receiving this report we immediately called the National Response Center.  Despite the volume of toxin spilled into a waterway, it is still essential to report all incidences to the NRC to assure that appropriate actions are taken.  The NRC is dispatches the report to all local parties required to respond to such an event (i.e. Coast Guard, DHEC, etc.).  Investigators reported to the scene in an attempt to mitigate any threats to the environment and to seek out a responsible party.

We have not received any further information; however, we will update you with additional details as we receive them.

Charleston Waterkeeper has received numerous tips regarding an oil (or gasoline) spill on the Intra-coastal Waterway by IOP. We are currently keeping a finger on the pulse of this incident and will try to update this post as often as we can.

Coast Guard and IOP Fire is apparently responding on scene. If you have any additional information please leave it as a comment below.

Update:  From our Facebook page… Frankie Pettit commented at 11:24pm, March 25, “DHEC made the call to let whatever it was “burn off” during the day tomorrow.”

Oil from a spill last month stains the sea-grass at Patriots Point

Oil from a spill last month stains the sea-grass at Patriots Point

Last month, a large oil slick consumed much of Charleston Harbor Marina on Patriots Point.  Charleston Waterkeeper was informed of the spill by several citizen reporters.  For the past month, we have been trying to get answers regarding the source and cause of this spill, however not much has been learned since the day of the incident.

Coast Guard investigators reported to the scene the day of the spill, yet did not discover any findings that revealed possible responsible parties.  Charleston Harbor Marina employees told Charleston Waterkeeper that many boat owners were upset at the lack of clean-up efforts.  Oil can still be seen in the stained sea-grass on the shoreline by the marina.

Last week at a United States Coast Guard lead Environmental Response Committee Meeting, I spoke with Chief Ender regarding the spill.  He said that their investigators’ findings were “inconclusive” in pinpointing the source of the spill.

Post and Courier recently published an article revealing the poor condition of all four warships forming the heart of the Patriot’s Point Naval and Maritime Museum.  The condition of these aging ships raise many questions regarding their structural integrity.  It is not clear whether or not any of the ships still have hydrocarbons (oils, etc.) on board.