Integrated oil spill response actions and environmental effects
The project focuses on developing, comparing and evaluating the effectiveness and environmental effects of different oil spill response methods in a cold climate. In addition to this, we develop a system for the real-time observation of underwater oil spills and a strategic tool for choosing oil spill response methods.
- to improve the observation and predictions of oil spreading in the sea using novel on-line sensors on-board vessels, fixed structures or gliders, and smart data transfer into operational awareness systems;
- to examine the true environmental impacts and benefits of a suite of marine oil spill response methods (mechanical collection in water and below ice, in situ burning, use of chemical dispersants, bioremediation, electro-kinetics, and combinations of these) in cold climate and ice-infested areas;
- to assess the impacts on biota of naturally and chemically dispersed oil, in situ burning residues and non-collected oil using biomarker methods and to develop specific methods for the rapid detection of the effects of oil pollution;
- to develop a strategic Net Environmental Benefit Analysis tool (sNEBA) for oil spill response strategy decision making.
A true trans-disciplinary consortium will carry out the project. Oil sensors will be applied to novel platforms such as ferry-boxes, smart buoys, and gliders. The environmental impacts of the oil spill response methods will be assessed by performing pilot tests and field experiments in the coastal waters of Greenland, as well as laboratory tests in Svalbard and the Baltic Sea with the main focus on dispersed oil, in situ burning residues and non-collected oil.
The sNEBA tool will be developed to include and overarch the biological and technical knowledge obtained in the project, as well as integrate with operational assessments being based on expertise on coastal protection and shoreline response. This can be used in establishing cross-border and trans-boundary cooperation and agreements. The proposal addresses novel observation technology and integrated response methods at extreme cold temperatures and in ice. It also addresses the environmental impacts and includes a partner from Canada. The results are vital for the off-shore industry and will enhance the business of oil spill response services.
More information about the project can be found at the project website.