Xylene tanker threatens Clipperton Island

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Toxic xylene is leaking from a ship on Clipperton Island in the Eastern Pacific, placing the area's fishes at risk.

According to the Tahiti Press, a chemical tanker carrying xylene - a flammable solvent which is refined from crude oil - ran aground on Clipperton Island.

At the time, its cargo of 10,000 tons of xylene was believed to be intact, but new reports claim that the High Commisioner of French Polynesia has cancelled an application to collect fish at the Isle of Passion because xylene and other toxic substances are leaking out of the ship.

The island territory is being cordoned off and all ships are banned from approaching.

Clipperton Island is home to many fish species, including the famous Clipperton Island angel, Holacanthus limbaughi.