Russia: expand to Asia or save the tiger?
26 January 2010
As well as the world’s largest exporter of crude oil, Russia is also home to the world’s largest cat; the Siberian tiger. An endangered species, only 450 of these big cats remain in the Russian wild. Now they face another danger: oil spill.
A pipeline in Eastern Siberia, Russia, has leaked around 10,600 cubic feet of oil across a 2km-long area, posing a threat to the already-endangered Siberian tiger.
The first section of the Siberia-Pacific oil pipeline began operating in December and the leak occurred during regulatory work on the pipeline, according to the spokesman for Transneft Igor Dyomin.
‘We are trying to establish the cause, but it is not connected to the operation of the pipeline. We have not ruled out human error,’ said Dyomin.
With an extension of this pipeline planned to stretch for 2,100km, the WWF are worried about more disasters occurring in the Siberian tiger’s habitat.
However, Russia hopes to expand its customer base and start supplying oil to Asia. The second part of the pipeline will run from Skovorodino to the oil terminal Kozmino.