Small patches of oil were seen Sunday from a coal-carrying ship that ran aground on Australia's Great Barrier Reef....[Source: SFgate.com]
Authorities fear an oil spill would cause environmental damage to the world's largest coral reef...
The vessel was carrying about 72,000 U.S. tons (65,000 metric tons) of coal from the Queensland port of Gladstone to China. It has 1,000 U.S. tons (950 metric tons) of oil on board.
Conservationists have expressed outrage that bulk carriers can travel through the reef without a marine pilot with local expertise.