A city on South Korea’s Jeju Island says a project that recovers waste lubricants generated by fishing vessels is helping to protect the local marine environment.
The project removes pollutants from the sea by collecting and treating used lubricating oil from fishing vessels and also through the repair and reinforcement of waste lubricating oil collection facilities, the city said in a press release issued by its public affairs office on July 27. It is part of an ongoing national project that has operated in 12 other local ports as well.
As of the second quarter of this year, Seogwipo City estimated the facilities collected 17,700 liters of waste lubricants, 33,800 liters of liquid sludge and 11.6 metric tons of solid waste, or oil mop.
Last year, the city collected and processed 34,800 liters of waste lubricating oil, 102,400 liters of liquid sludge, and 15.3 tons of solid waste by investing 27 million won (U.S. $23 million) and by repairing and reinforcing two waste lubricant collection sites, known as Seogwipo 1 and Seongsanpo 1.
When fishermen bring waste lubricants from their fishing vessels to each collection facility, the government said, the material is turned over to the Korea Marine Environment Management Corp. in Suhyu. According to its website, the company operates 13 pollutant storage facilities, annually collecting and processing over 9,000 tons of pollutants –bilge, waste lubricating oil, sludge, etc. – generated from ships and marine facilities. It has installed containers to collect used oil and bilge free of charge from small fishing boats of less than 10 tons.
Seogwipo is on Jeju Island, in the southern part of Jeju Special Self-governing Province. The island is located south of the southwestern side of the Korean peninsula.
The government said it has also repaired and reinforced one aged waste oil collection site in Moseulpo, which is a large fishing port located near the southwestern tip of Jeju. “We will try to make a clean coast by collecting waste lubricants that can be discharged from the sea, preventing marine pollution, and continuously maintaining old waste lubricant collection sites in ports and ports,” Jeong Yeong-heon, director of the agricultural and livestock economy department of Seogwipo-si, said in the press release.