Salvors Remove Debris From Seattle Dive Site Damaged by Environmental Activists

Mike Schuler
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July 17, 2015

Protester’s against the Shell Oil Company’s drilling rig Polar Pioneer as it arrives in Seattle, Washington, May 14, 2015. Image (c) REUTERS/Matt Mills McKnight


Local divers and a commercial salvage company worked together in Seattle this week to remove debris left behind at a popular dive site by environmental activists during the recent protests against Shell’s offshore oil drilling in the arctic.

The dive organization Global Underwater Explorers (GUE) Seattle reports that its scuba divers located the underwater debris field on Monday, which consisted of concrete blocks and steel cables used to moor a protest barge in Elliot Bay in protest of Shell’s Polar Pioneer arctic drilling rig.

The organization says that back in May, an environmental activist group inadvertently caused damage to the popular Alki Cove 2 underwater park when they moored the Solar Pioneer barge near Harbor Island Terminal 5, the Seattle home of the Shell’s arctic fleet, and then left some debris behind.

To help with salvage, the GUE divers attached mooring lines and buoys to the debris so that a commercial dive team from Global Diving & Salvage could easily lift the debris from the seabed during an operation that took about three hours.

GEU notes that Royal Dutch Shell, Foss Maritime and John Sellers (the operator of the Solar Pioneer) all contributed financially to help with the cleanup effort and future restoration work.

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