Last week was quite eventful. First the fuel storage tank that exploded and caught fire while under maintenance posed a question of why someone used a blowtorch (or any welding torch or naked flame) on the tanks with fuel in it as the Minister of Works noted?
No doubt the tanks design was solid as the contractors took pains to explain.
There was no need for fear of the Apia township being razed to the ground. As two tanks had already been ‘serviced’ and it was the third and last tank being serviced when it caught fire, it was implicitly imputed that the work was safe according to industry standards. The P.M did not help when he blamed P.P.S of using unqualified workers, again throwing the blame elsewhere but where it rightly belongs.
And the pollution issues? This would make a good project for high school students using internet etc. If the tank (approx diameter=20m,height=50m) was a third full, then diesel which burned for nearly six hours will have emitted about 13,000 tonnes of CO2 in the atmosphere (1 litre diesel produces 2.65kg C02).
The black smoke, which is partially burnt diesel is something else. 13000 tonnes of C02? A bit of quandary like Einstein was in. (Albert Einstein did not believe the existence of gravitational waves as predicted by his Relativity Theory.
It’s proven now - 100 years later). That’s a lot of pollutants/greenhouse gas. Now who pays what where? And every month the tank gets refilled? And there’s three of them? I’m starting to get interested in this global warming stuff.
Then there were the Panama Papers with Samoa getting ‘honorable’ mention in the company of tax evasion/money laundering/tax havens etc. Stuff that normally attracts the illegitimate more than the legitimate.
There was also this worry of Mossack Fonesca getting deeply involved in our local government. As the Panama leaks revealed, our government was deliberately stalling an OECD vote while Mossack Fonesca was drafting a Samoan government position memo/paper. There was also use of the Samoan top diplomat in Australia for activities the P.M is not aware of.
It does not bode well with our government’s intention of liberating traditional lands when foreign companies write official Samoan policies.
Like our sevens rugby team, we need to up our game in the firm belief that the future of Samoa is in our hands NOW.