EOSAT / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY EOSAT / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
False-colour satellite image of a vast oil slick coming ashore in Saudi Arabia on 16 February 1991. The image was made using the Thematic Mapper (TM) of the Landsat 5 satellite in three wavebands; mid-infrared, green and blue. The oil slick is shown as a rust red colour. The slick formed when Iraqi troops in occupied Kuwait released the oil into the Persian Gulf from the Al Fuhayhil oil terminals on 22 January 1991. In this image, the oil has already started to land on the coast near the port of Al Jubayl. In addition to the vast impact on the local ecosystem, the oil threatened the operation of the desalinisation plants, source of much of the country's freshwater supplies.
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