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Cairn Energy oil spill plan

An energy company based in Scotland has refused to give full details about its spill response plan should there be an accident when it is drilling for oil in the Arctic.

The company, Cairn Energy, is due to carry out tests in the Greenland area in the spring. An investigation carried out by the BBC and the Greenland government has found the lack of information was in part to stop third party companies finding out the energy company’s plans.

The Arctic has still been largely unexplored in the search for oil, with many experts believing that there are about a quarter of the world’s oil reserves still lying undiscovered in the region.

A marine pollution expert from the University of Liverpool, Dr Martin Preston, has expressed his concern at the lack of information, he stated:

"I think they are making comments about using really rather standard techniques which are employed elsewhere and I'm not sure they've really taken on board some of the risks that are associated with this high latitude work. And that worries me."

Cairn’s Alpha oil rig was occupied by Greenpeace protestors in August before they were arrested.

Cairn say they have given the Greenland government a detailed spill response plan should a spill occur and will run two rigs in tandem so one can act as a relief well should a blow-out happen.

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