Brazil investigates alleged oil spill from tanker in 2023

BRASILIA (Reuters) - Brazil is looking for information on an alleged September 2023 tanker oil spill off its northern coast, after non-governmental organization Arayara Institute on Thursday said satellite images showed an apparent 170-square-kilometer (66-square-mile) spill.

According to a preliminary assessment, the potential leak may have originated from a Panamanian vessel, Arayara Institute, which is focused on environmental issues, the institute said in a statement.

The executive secretary at Brazil's environment ministry, Joao Paulo Capobianco, told journalists in Brasilia the government was seeking more details and monitoring the "alleged oil spill".

Capobianco said preliminary information the government gathered pointed to a potential oil spill located in international waters off Brazil's coast, though the information needed to be corroborated.

The government planned to contact the International Maritime Organization and was coordinating with the Brazilian Navy to ascertain what vessels were present in the area around the time of the alleged incident.

(Reporting by Lisandra Paraguassu in Brasilia; Writing and additional reporting by Andre Romani; Editing by Anthony Esposito and Stephen Coates)