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Abandoned ships create problems in Nigeria

May 1, 2012

Along the coast of Nigeria, abandoned ships dot the shore, and their presence is becoming an area of great concern. The Associated Press reports the rusting hulls beached on the coast are extremely detrimental to the environment, as they are eroding the beaches at rates of nearly a kilometer each day.

"Shorelines are supposed to seasonally increase and decrease," Ikenna Onyema, a marine science professor at the University of Lagos told the AP. "When a man made structure comes in between, it cuts out its life."

Most of the tankers have been left along the coast by pirates and crude oil thieves who steal oil from foreign pipelines and transfer it to these massive boats, according to the news source. Once the oil has been sold, the ships are discarded and wind up along the coast, partially submerged just offshore or resting on the beach.

There are many sunken ships around the world, and some are left at the bottom of the ocean intentionally so they will transform into reefs and support aquatic life. The Nigerian boats, however, are not serving a higher purpose, and promises to remove them by the Nigerian Maritime Administration have gone unfulfilled.

Those who want to find out more about the abandoned ships can find out by calling Nigeria with international phone cards and talking to their friends.

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