(Photo: Armada Nacional)

Colombia’s security forces have seized 1,865 gallons of illegal petroleum diesel that was found floating on the water of the Putumayo River last Thursday.

A joint operation by the Colombian Navy and the Army in Puerto Asis, a municipality in Putumayo State, discovered 1,865 gallons of illegal diesel fuel that had been cast into the river.

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Captain Oscar Giraldo, of the 55th Battalion, told radio station Radio Santa Fe that the fuel was found floating on the waters of the Putumayo River, two kilometers away from “La Esmeralda” dock. The combustible supplies had been stored in 31 barrels with a capacity of 55 gallons, and eight barrels of 20 gallons each, covered up with vegetation and canvas cloth.

The crew of a fluvial support boat belonging to the 30th Marines then confiscated the fuel oil, handing it over to the relevant authorities.

This event may also flag a growing environmental concern for Colombia’s rivers. According Radio Santa Fe, the past few months have seen a worrying increase in river-based transport of fuel oil, a method that all too often results in spillages that contaminate the water used by the indigenous and farming communities.

Caracol Radio reports that the Navy will continue to monitor the waters in the states of Putumayo, Caqueta and Amazonas in order to preserve their natural resources.


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