Environmental Impacts From Arctic Oil Spills and Arctic Oil Spill Response Technologies

Key Goals

The overall goal of this research project is to improve the knowledge base for using “Net Environmental Benefit Analysis” (NEBA) in oil spill response decision making, and ultimately gain stakeholder acceptance of the role of environmental impact assessment in oil spill response plans and operations.  The choice of response techniques for a specific spill has to consider possible impacts of untreated oil on one or more components of the ecosystem and compare the option of no action to possible impacts of oil treated with one or more response techniques. Industry recommends basing trade-off decisions on a structured NEBA approach.  This approach is designed to develop a response strategy that minimizes the environmental impact from a spill and facilitates a faster recovery. This project which is being conducted in three phases:

  1. Perform a comprehensive review on the environmental impacts of arctic oil spills and from the technologies used to respond to such spills and identify research activities to improve the knowledge base for using NEBA in the Arctic.
  2. Conduct and complete the most crucial research activities identified in phase one.  This work included laboratory and modelling studies and field research conducted at Svea, Norway.
  3. Disseminate phase 2 results through publication in peer reviewed journals and at conferences; provide online data summaries on exposure potential, sensitivity and resilience for Arctic species linked to key literature; Update and finalise the NEBA information and support tool and demonstrate deployment possibilities through existing NEBA frameworks (including creation of a web interface and presentation material).