25 Sep 2013

Vanuatu councillor calls for US to look at WWII ordnances

7:41 am on 25 September 2013

A councillor of the Vanuatu islands of Espiritu Santo and Malo says the United States should do something about the Second World War wrecks at Million Dollar Point.

At the end of the war, thousands of tonnes of US military equipment such as trucks and bulldozers were dumped into the sea, after soldiers failed to broker a deal to sell them to the Anglo-French government.

The area has become a unique dive site, but the secretary-general of the Sanma Provincial Council, Sakaraia Daniel, says people can get injured swimming and fishing in the shallow waters, and there are still likely effects to the ecosystem.

"The erosion of metals, in a way, they give a negative impact to the ocean, not only in that area, but as the tides flow in and out, that take it all across the peninsula. So it's in that area and extending to several hundred metres away."

Sakaraia Daniel says they have asked the US embassy to raise the possibility of extending ordnance removal in Solomon Islands to Vanuatu.