The second post – first here - in the series of, hopefully, short posts in which I highlight areas where Trafigura, or those whose writing is supportive of them, does not tell the whole truth. There will be truth, possibly a lot of truth, in the statements I look at but all is not as it seems. [UPDATE: added 21.30 on 3 Dec 2011: I don’t allege that the ‘Not the Whole Truth’s are deliberate.]
In the first post I looked at the second sentence in Trafigura’s 38 page document, “Trafigura and the Probo Koala” – on page 4 after the index – and I stay with that sentence here.
That sentence states:
“The vessel carried out a procedure for caustic washing on several cargoes of one such product, coker naphtha, and needed to discharge a relatively small [Calum’s emphasis] amount of residual waste (often referred to as ‘slops’).”
‘Small’ is a word with magical properties; is wonderfully non-specific; has no units; its meaning in the eye of the beholder. Each of us will form a view as to what is ‘a relatively small [Calum’s emphasis] amount of residual waste’ .
What might ‘small’ mean?
litre, gallon, bucketful, barrel, tonne, few tonnes?
In Amsterdam, Trafigura asked to discharge up to 350 cubic meters (cbm) - approx. 350 tonnes, 350,000kg. [Updated at 09.30 on Dec 2 2011 to show volume discharged was 350cbm and not 250 as initially stated. Trafigura’s request for a quote shows 250cbm as the maximum but on their website they state that 350cbm was actually discharged]
350cbm? ‘Small’? Seems a lot to me. Eye of the beholder, you see!
The Probo Koala’s waste tanks could hold 948cbm of waste and so 350cbm is 37% of its waste capacity. Not really small. Certainly, in terms of the volume of gasoline the Probo Koala could transport – approx 50,000cbm – the volume of waste discharged is small but 350 tonnes is not what I would term ‘small’.
But let us not forget that the volume of waste discharged in Abidjan was 508cbm.
Not the whole truth !
and remember from the 1st post the key missing information was ‘smell’ [these 12 words added at 09.35 Dec 2 2011]