The Ambarnaja River, which flows into Siberia, leaked 21,000 tons of diesel on Friday when the diesel tank at the Norilsk Nickel subsidiary power plant near the city of Norilsk collapsed, according to the news agency TASS.

Marine Rescue has placed hoses in the river to help control and collect diesel.

Image: Handout / AFP / Magazine image

Norilsk is located in central Siberia, west of the Urals, in the Krasnoyarsk Krai, north of the Arctic Circle, and is difficult to reach.

Diesel leakage is considered the largest in northern Russia. From the satellite images, you can see that the river is running diesel in red for a long distance.

- The event will lead to catastrophic consequences and we will see its consequences in the coming years. We are talking about dead fish, contaminated feathers of birds and poisoned animals, WWF Arctic Coordinator Sergey Verkhovets said, according to CNN.

Sea rescue in their duties.

Photo: Yuri Kadobnov / AFP / Lehtikuva

Authorities only found out about what happened on Sunday, when the issue was already hotly discussed on social media. Initially, factory workers thought they could handle the situation themselves. President Vladimir Putin declared a state of emergency on Wednesday over a diesel leak.

According to Nornickel, who runs the power plant, diesel can be collected from the river in 10 to 14 days, but experts have doubted whether it is possible to recover all the diesel. In any case, the environmental consequences of the leak are great.

According to Russian Environment Minister Dmitry Kobylkin, burning diesel is not an option.

- The situation is very difficult. I can’t imagine burning such a large amount of fuel in the Arctic. A huge fire would be very problematic in an area like this, he said, according to the Guardian.

Rescue operations are hampered, among other things, by the lack of a road network in the area.

Photo: Yuri Kadobnov / AFP / Lehtikuva

According to the company, the fuel tank collapsed because the beams supporting it could no longer withstand permafrost and its possible melting in the warm summers of recent years. Siberia has been four degrees warmer than average this year.

Norilsk is the world’s leading producer of nickel and palladium, and the city is badly polluted in the wake of industry.