- Middle East/North Africa
A clean-up effort is underway as authorities try to contain an oil leak at five exploration areas in Gamsha Bay, north of Hurghada.
Environment officials have filed two reports against the General Petroleum Authority (GPA), which has the concession to search for oil in the region, governorate authorities said.
Red Sea Governorate sources said the authority is cleaning up the spill by sucking up oil and installing rubber barriers.
Environment protection organizations and fishermen are warning that the spill could spread to natural reserves and resort beaches if the leak continues.
Sayyed Madyan, head of Hurghada's Environmental Affairs Agency, said a committee of researchers is following up on the leak and on the initial response plan.
Madyan added that the leak is the second in two months and the third since 2009.
The Environment Ministry fined GPA LE2 million following a gas leak in the same region in October.
GPA Chairman Allam Allam attributed the leak to earthquakes that led to the emission of poisonous gases and oil.
The first oil well will be dug in the region in January, which is expected to put an end to leaks from the seabed.
Translated from the Arabic Edition