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Oil pollution was no news even before Druzhba incident, Kommersant reports


According to the Russian media Kommersant, it was known about the pollution of Russian oil by organochlorine in Druzhba pipeline two weeks before Belneftekhim filed the relevant complaint. According to the publication, the Volgograd oil refinery of Lukoil recorded harmful impurities on April 4. This lasted until April 12. There was an appeal to the enterprise Transneft-Privolga in this case. Both Transneft and Lukoil acknowledged that there had been such a problem, but it was not related to the subsequent problems at the Druzhba pipeline. How organochlorine compounds could have got into oil was not explained. A Kommersant source claims that it's standard practice to supply oil to refineries with a slight excess of organochlorine content.

On April 19, the Belarusian side reported that the Druzhba pipeline had poor quality oil (the content of organochlorine was many times higher than the permissible norm). The transit of oil to Europe via Belarus was stopped. Interestingly, Russia considered that oil was polluted on purpose (according to the investigation, it was done to conceal the theft) and initiated a criminal case. Due to the fact that the polluted oil spoils the process equipment at the refineries, Belarusians are waiting for compensation, but the exact amount of losses is still unknown.