The award to ISCO of Consultative Status at the International Maritime Organization (IMO) in 2007 meant that, for the first time, professionals involved in the international spill response community were given a voice at this United Nations organization. Since then, ISCO has taken an active role at IMO, especially in contributing to the work of the Technical Group established to advance the international implementation of the OPRC Convention and the OPRC-HNS Protocol.
The work of the OPRC-HNS Technical Group (TG) includes the development of guidelines and manuals for improving oil and chemical spill response. As professionals who are involved on a daily basis in the technical development and practice of spill response, corporate and individual members of ISCO are uniquely well qualified to contribute to the work of the TG by supporting ISCO’s efforts to gather practical knowledge that can be used in producing new technical guidelines and manuals. It is the international spill response community that has the hands-on experience of dealing with oil and HNS incidents and it’s not surprising that IMO has high expectations of the contribution that ISCO can make.
I do therefore urge you to support the work that ISCO is doing. If you haven’t already done so, you should join the organization. ISCO represents the spill control community and has members in 34 countries – most of the leading spill response manufacturers and response contractors are members, together with consultants, academic institutions, research establishments and many others. Being a member of ISCO gives positive benefits for your business and professional development.
You are also invited to share your experience and knowledge with the OPRC-HNS TG. Right now, ISCO has joined with other delegations to collate information on Marine HNS Incident Response and on Sub-Sea Oil Recovery. You can download reporting templates by clicking on these links – HNS Incident Response and Sub-Sea Oil Recovery or visit DOWNLOADS at http://www.spillcontrol.org
There’s a pay-back for you too – The IMO OPRC-HNS TG comprises government representatives from countries that are parties to the IMO Convention, delegates from IMO regional seas organizations, and international representatives of shipping, tanker-owners, oil industry, insurance funds, ports, and others. By getting involved you can raise your profile with people who need to know who out there is developing new technologies and has the hands-on experience and knowledge in dealing with these problems. Your contributions will be acknowledged.
PS : Please bear in mind that new developments emanating from the Deepwater Horizon spill are going to affect regulations and lead to improved equipment and techniques. ISCO will help provide you with information that will help you to be better prepared for future events.
David Usher, President of ISCO.