4 Mar 2010

Fuel shortage disrupts life in two atolls in Marshall Islands

5:41 pm on 4 March 2010

Two islands in the Marshall Islands have run out of fuel because of a lack of government vessels and disagreement on shipping prices.

The country's second largest urban center, Ebeye, has been out of petrol and kerosene for two weeks now and Jaluit has run out of diesel needed to keep the power plant operating.

About 1,000 workers commute daily the five kilometers between Ebeye and the Kwajalein missile testing range on U.S. Army barges, but there are no water taxis between the two atolls.

The speaker of parliament, Alvin Jacklick, who operates a fuel company that supplies Ebeye and Jaluit, says he is waiting for the government landing

craft Jeljelet Ae to be fixed to deliver fuel to both islands.

The vessel has been beached in Majuro for several weeks undergoing repairs to its hull.