Oak Creek Firm Called On To Clean Up Kuwait Oil Disaster
Biogenesis, a division of Amiran Technologies, will clean up oil and other contaminants in Kuwait sands caused by a 1990 attack.
Kuwait officials have tapped an Oak Creek-based firm to remediate one of the largest oil disasters in world history -- the 1990 Kuwait oil spill.
Biogenesis, a division of Amiran Technologies, will clean up the oil and other contaminants in the Kuwait sands. Amiran Technologies is headquartered at 610 W. Rawson Ave.
In a news release, Biogenesis Chief Executive Officer Mohsen Amiran said the spill is at least 10 times that of the 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. The amount of oil is worth about $5 billion in today's dollars.
"To provide some perspective about the massive nature of this disaster, the contaminated areas are about ten times the size of the isle of Manhattan, or three times the size of Yellowstone National Park, or about the size of the state of New Jersey," Amiran said.
"This is a massive job."
Saddam Hussein's Iraqi troops caused the disaster in 1990 after blowing up more than 600 oil wells, according to the news release. Oil leakage lasted at least eight months after the war ended in 1991 and caused extensive air pollution, plant and animal deaths and altered thousands of acres of desert sand. Some of the oil seeped into the aquifer used for drinking water.
The United Nations War Reparations Fund has allocated $3 billion for the clean-up. Biogensis has an initial contract of $15 million to use its sand washing system to extract and separate oil, salts and other contaminants.
The project will initially employ about 200 people.
"We are honored to be part of the initial phase of this historic clean-up," Amiran Technologies CEO Phil Skrade said in the news release. "After our unique cleansing system is employed, it is our goal to give the Kuwaitis clean, construction grade sand and refinable oil for sale."
Amiran Technologies and Biogensis want to work on similar projects closer to home in North America, according to the news release.
Amiran Technologies offers remediation to polluted lakes, rivers and streams.