What’s New

NEW MEMBERS AND AWARDS OF PROFESSIONAL RECOGNITION (7/1/2013)

This year it will be 30 years since David Usher and John McMurtrie first discussed the formation of ISCO during the International Oil Spill Conference held at San Antonio in Texas in 1983. With the launch of ISCO’s Professional Recognition initiative the Membership Committee has recommended that it would be appropriate to recognise the anniversary of this historic event in the first awards of honorary fellowship of ISCO. It has also been recommended that the unstinting support and active contribution made over many years by Rear Admiral M. L. Stacey CB, Marc Shaye and Dan Sheehan be similarly recognised.  Also, with the introduction of the new classes of ISCO Membership, existing Honorary Members of ISCO have become Honorary Fellows (Hon.FISCO).
Following on completion of assessment by the Membership Standards Committee, we are also pleased to announce election of new Fellows (FISCO), Members (MISCO) and Associate Members (AMISCO). We also welcome a number of new Corporate Members, Industry Partners and Individual Members who have recently joined the organization. 
 
Honorary Fellows (Hon.FISCO)

Mr David Usher (USA)
Mr John McMurtrie (UK)
Rear Admiral M.L. Stacey, CB. (UK)
Mr Marc Shaye (USA)
Mr Dan Sheehan (USA)
Dr Douglas Cormack (UK)
Dr Wierd Koops (The Netherlands)
Mr Duncan Lyon (UK)

Fellows (FISCO)

Mr Jan Allers (Norway)
Captain Bill Boyle MNI (UK)
Mr John Østergaard (Sweden)
Mr Simon Rickaby (UK)

Members (MISCO)

Mr Nick Bailey (UK)
Mr William E. Baird (USA)
Mr Steve Guy (UK)
Mr Tony Harmer (UK)
Mr Carlos Sagrera (Uruguay)
Mr Simon Valentine (UK)

Associate Member (AMISCO)

Mr Nelson Sunday (Nigeria)

New Corporate Members

Chukar Waterjet, Inc. (USA)
Sintac-Polska Sp. z.o.o. (Poland)

New Industry Partner

Varichem de Colombia (Colombia)

New Individual Members

Mr Paul van Gastel (Belgium)
Mr Jaime Hernandez (Mexico)
Mr Osvaldo Nogueira (Brazil)
Mr Ilidio Franco Santos (Portugal) 

NEW APPLICATIONS FOR AWARD OF PROFESSIONAL RECOGNITION (7/1/2013)

If you missed the 31 December 2012 deadline for inclusion in the first tranche of applications to be assessed by the Membership Standards Committee, please note that the next meeting of the Membership Standards Committee will take place during March,2013 and applications should be received no later than 28 February 2013. Announcement of awards will be made early in April 2013.

All of the information about Professional Membership of ISCO can be found on the ISCO website at http://www.spillcontrol.org

 

REAR ADMIRAL M. L. STACEY, C.B. (17/12/12)

It is now five months since Michael Stacey, a member of the ISCO Executive Committee and one of our most stalwart supporters, suffered a serious stroke. 

I’m sorry to report that, owing to set-backs due to infections, he is still in hospital.  The good news is that he hopes to be discharged early in the New Year. He is continuing his physiotherapy to build up his strength and help to improve his speech. He is well in himself and remains as ever, alert to what is going on in the world and retains his sense of humour. When he leaves hospital he will go to the Pax Hill Nursing home at Bentley, Surrey, GU10 5NG for some respite after the long stay in hospital, and of course to be with his wife, Penelope.  Michael is very keen to get out of hospital and is looking forward to mastering his I pad and getting back into the world of e-mail.

I am sure that members and readers will join in sending Michael our very best wishes.

 

 INFORMATION FOR INDIVIDUALS APPLYING FOR PROFESSIONAL MEMBERSHIP (3/12/12)

Please note –

• The deadline for receiving completed applications to be included in the first tranche of applications to be assessed is 31/12/12 
• The Membership Standards Committee is not expected to complete work on the assessment of these applications before this date.
• You will be advised early in the New Year on the recommendations made by the Membership Standards Committee.
• If any parts of the submitted form are not completed and/or signed where required, and if required attachments are missing, you will be asked to remedy omission/s. This may result in delay in the assessment of your application.
• Prepayment of the required Assessment Fee is required before applications are assessed by the Membership Standards Committee. You can enclose a cheque with your application or pay by credit/debit card using the secure facility on the ISCO website. In order to pay by bank transfer of funds, please contact the ISCO secretary.

If you have not yet submitted your application –

• Because original signatures and initials are required, you will have to send your completed application and supporting documents by post to the ISCO Secretariat at Balbithan House, Kintore, Inverurie, Aberdeenshire AB51 9UQ, UK.
• You should be aware that postal deliveries can take a few days. To avoid missing the deadline, please send as soon as possible.

If you are successful in your application –

• You will be notified of the grade of Professional Membership awarded to you by the organization
• You will receive a Certificate of Professional Membership confirming the award and grade of membership awarded.
• Depending on the grade of membership awarded, you will be entitled to use the letters A.M.I.S.C.O. or M.I.S.C.O. or F.I.S.C.O after your name to indicate your professional status.
• You will be able to enjoy all of the benefits of being a Professional Member of ISCO

Students / Apprentices / Trainees –

• No Assessment Fee is required
• You should use the Professional Membership Application Form which can be downloaded from the ISCO website but need only complete part 1 (Personal Details), part 7 (Declaration) and part 9 (Preferred user name and password).
• If you are being sponsored by your employer, he/she should provide a covering letter confirming that you are a student / apprentice / trainee in his/her employment.
• If you are applying on your own behalf please attach a covering letter giving details of your course of studies, apprenticeship or trainee status. You will not be required to pay the annual Student Membership Fee until your membership of ISCO has been formalised.
• You should regard Student Membership as a first step in your professional development and aim to achieve higher grades of Professional Membership as you gain knowledge, experience and qualifications.

Obligations and Conditions

• All Professional Members of ISCO are required to abide by the ISCO Code of Professional Conduct and other Rules and Regulations of the Organization.
• These and other relevant information and procedures can be accessed on the ISCO website. 
• Failure to comply with these requirements may result in loss of membership benefits and removal from the Roll of Members.

 

IMO RRI CORRESPONDENCE GROUP (3/12/12)

In case you haven’t looked at the ISCO RRI pages recently, around 70 categories of equipment / materials have been added to the list  that are being recommended for inclusion in the resource databank in case of a major oil spill at any world location.

Many of these resources will be available within inventories owned by ISCO Corporate Members who will later be identified in the RRI.

One of the next tasks will be to look at human resources – individuals who have specialised knowledge and experience – and start to define categories of know -how that may be in short supply.

Members of the group are asked to contribute to the RRI initiative by sending in their ideas and comments for posting on the RRI pages.

Some members – response companies, equipment and materials manufacturers, consultants and training providers – who have not yet joined the RRI correspondence group are recommended to do so now.  We want to have the benefit of your inputs.

 

ISCO AT CLEAN GULF 2012 (19/11/12)

A short report from ISCO President, David Usher.

In the picture: On left, Bob Umbdenstock of ISCO Corporate Member, Resolve Marine and, on right, David Usher, President of ISCO

Mary Ann Dalgleish, ISCO’s Membership Director, and I attended the Clean Gulf Conference and Exhibition in New Orleans last week.  ISCO had a booth in the exhibition area and this worked well as a focal point for meeting with a large number of you who were at Clean Gulf.

We were warmly welcomed by attendees and the number of people who stopped to say “hello” and ask questions about ISCO’s current activities was very high. We were kept very busy !

It was good to meet with so many old friends and speak to so many I had not met before. Many of those stopping by expressed how much they liked the Newsletter and how they enjoyed reading it weekly.

There was a great deal of interest in what ISCO is doing for the spill response community, including the new professional membership initiative and ISCO’s active involvement, through our membership of the IMO OPRC-HNS Technical Group, in the International Offers of Assistance (IOA) and Response Resource Inventory (RRI) initiatives.

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In the picture: On left, Matt Goldsmith of Marine Well Containment Company with, on right, ISCO President.. The traditional draw for a bottle of fine malt whisky was won by Warren Christopherson of Chukar Waterjet Inc. but, as Warren had to leave early to travel back to Minnesota, he nominated Matt to receive the prize on his behalf.

During the event I was able to attend the Spill Control Association of America (SCAA) afterglow event and speak with many in our colleagues. Several SCAA members are also Corporate Members of ISCO.

I also attended a meeting of the IOA Core Group (of which ISCO is a member) convened by Heather Parker of the US Coast Guard.  The work being done in the development of the IOA and RRI is of high value to our members, because the private sector (response contractors, manufacturers, consultants and training providers) are recognised as having an important role in planning for improved international co-operation in response to future major spill events. Separate reports on this meeting will be published in a forthcoming issue of the Newsletter and circulated to members of the ISCO RRI Correspondence Group.

All-in-all I think that ISCO’s participation in the Clean Gulf event was very successful and will undoubtedly result in an increase in the number of our members – something that is very important for the organization.  Without the contributions of our members the work that ISCO is doing on behalf of our community could not continue.

I would like to express my thanks to all of our members for their continuing support. Together, we have achieved much over the past years.  With more members, we could do more and I urge all of you who have not yet joined us to do it now.

David Usher

ISCO AT CLEAN GULF 2012 IN NEW ORLEANS (BOOTH 1047 IN EXHIBITION HALL) (12/11/12)

 This week ISCO President, David Usher, and Membership Director, Mary Ann Dalgleish are attending Clean Gulf. 

They look forward to seeing many of our members at the event and to meeting others who have not yet joined ISCO.

Topics likely to be discussed will include some of ISCO’s current initiatives –

• Supporting creation of the International Response Resource Inventory

As reported in previous issues of the ISCO Newsletter, ISCO joined with other delegations at the IMO OPRC-HNS Technical Group meeting in London earlier this year in supporting an initiative introduced by the US delegation to apply lessons learned during the Macondo spill response in improving the ways that International Offers of Assistance (IOA) will be handled in future.

Part of this initiative is the creation of an international Response Resource Inventory (RRI).  The IOA project aims to streamline the process under which available response resources can be identified, sourced and rapidly mobilised to a major oil spill event in any part of the world.  The term “resources” means equipment, materials, and people with relevant knowledge and experience.

ISCO has joined the IOA Core Group of interested delegations and has set up a correspondence group amongst its members to help progress the organization’s contribution.  Currently we are identifying kinds of equipment and materials that should be included in the RRI. So far, ISCO members have identified around 70 different categories of equipment /materials to be added to an initial listing of large, high capacity items compiled by the initial IOA ad hoc group.

ISCO’s focus is on resources that can be provided by the private sector (private sector to private sector; private sector to governments; and private sector – through – government to government). This is aligned with the interests and capabilities of our members.
The RRI project is a work-in-progress but we anticipate it will become a tool that will be used by governments and other organisations to quickly find urgently needed resources in major spill events.

Members of the ISCO RRI Correspondence Group should note that a new post has been made on the RRI Project page on the ISCO website. Members who would like to join the Correspondence Group should contact the Secretary.

• Working to improve continuity of at-sea oil spill recovery operations

ISCO is continuing its efforts to make it easier for responders engaged in at-sea oil skimming operations to decant settled-out water instead of halting oil recovery because available tank capacity is topped-up.  Several of our members have very strongly voiced their frustration at being refused permission to decant settled-out water in a responsible way despite it being so obvious that consideration of net environmental benefit clearly indicates that decanting and continuation of productive skimming is the only sensible option.

• Providing a career development path via Professional Membership

Students, apprentices and trainees can join ISCO as student members and pursue a career development path that, as qualifications and experience are gained, can lead to eligibility for Associate Membership (AMISCO), Membership (MISCO) and, eventually, Fellowship (FISCO). The key word is “professional” when applied to men and women who are making a success in their careers and have the necessary levels of knowledge and expertise.

Professional recognition is a visible mark of quality, competence and commitment, and can offer a significant advantage in today’s competitive environment.  More information can be found on the ISCO website at www.spillcontrol.org  Look under Membership and click on Professional.

The ISCO Secretariat is now receiving applications for Professional Membership and the submission deadline for applicants wishing to be included in the first tranche of applications to be considered by the Membership Standards Committee is 31 December 2012. Applicants are reminded that applications must be accompanied by the required assessment fee

• Improving response outcomes by application of scientific knowledge

Readers of Cormack’s Column will be very much aware of the number of beliefs and prejudices that currently inhibit or prevent the most effective response to oil and HNS pollution events.  ISCO argues that response plans and operations should be based on knowledge that has been proven by scientific experimentation and observation.

ISCO is currently working on the development of improved knowledge-based contingency planning for marine incidents.  This will fully take into account the fate of oils and HNS as controlled by their physical and chemical properties and their interaction with atmosphere, sea and shorelines. The means by which spills may be curtailed and the effectiveness of response techniques assisted by natural evaporation, dispersion, solution, and degradation will be fully addressed.

The overall aim is to make spill response more cost-effective and to achieve high quality clean-up outcomes by eliminating options that increase environmental damage and/or unnecessarily add to the cost and amount of work needed.

 

 INTERNATIONAL RESPONSE RESOURCE INVENTORY  (5/11/12)

“In the midst of a very large oil spill, having the right response equipment at the right time in the right location is crucial. Facility in acquiring essential equipment from one’s own nation is not enough. There needs to be an efficient process to source critical resources worldwide”. 
 

Reflecting on the kinds of spills that may require the mobilization of international response support, one could include events resulting from …

• Acts of war – for example, the Gulf War (1991) and Lebanon spill (2006)
• Oil well blowouts – for example, Deepwater Horizon in the Gulf of Mexico (2010)
• Oil tanker accidents – for example, Exxon Valdez (1989)
• Oil pipeline ruptures (subsea and on-land)
• Oil tank farm incidents (coastal terminals and inland depots)

… and one thing is certain – however hard we try to prevent such events, they will happen again, quite likely in remote areas of the world where local and regional resources for damage limitation are extremely limited.

We do need to be better prepared and this is why the International Offers of Assistance (IOA) and Response Resource Inventory (RRI) initiatives are important.

Co-operative international support is at the heart of ISCO’s objectives and this is worthy of your support.

A special web page has been created at www.spillcontrol.org   Members should log in and go to the IMO Section, then select Work Groups and RRI Project.  
Members who feel they would like to join the ISCO RRI Correspondence Group should contact the Secretariat – info@spillcontrol.org   The website has been set up in a such a way that you can very easily catch up on progress already made.

 

 

NEW MEMBER ELECTED TO ISCO COUNCIL (29/10/12)

Having relocated to the UK, ISCO Executive Committee Member Capt. Bill Boyle MNI has recently stood down as Member of ISCO Council for Brazil.

After consultation with ISCO Members in Brazil, Mr John Cantlie, Operations Manager of Alpina Briggs Defesa Ambiental SA, has been appointed as the new Member of ISCO Council for Brazil with the approval of all the members.

We take this opportunity to congratulate John on his appointment.

 

ISCO AT ARCTIC OIL SPILL CONFERENCE IN LONDON (24/10/12)

Next week ISCO Secretary, John McMurtrie, will be attending the Arctic Oil Spill Conference on Monday and Tuesday, 29-30 October at the Le Meridean Hotel, Piccadilly.  ISCO will have a stand at this event and you are cordially invited to visit.

 ISCO is supporting the Arctic Oil Spill Conference and recommends that you attend this very worthwhile event at which several of our members will be speaking.

The focus of the conference is on developing strategies to mitigate the environmental effects of operations in the Arctic, reviewing what is being done to prevent oil spills on ice and in ice-covered waters and finding out about new methods for containing and cleaning up oil spills in the Arctic environment. 

 

 

AN OPEN LETTER TO ENVIRONMENTAL NGOs (15/10/12)

Dr Douglas Cormack, Honorary Member of ISCO, has written an open letter to those NGOs that continue to support scientifically unproven beliefs that inhibit the application of cost-effective strategies for spill response.

The international Spill Control Organisation (ISCO) is currently producing a knowledge-based contingency plan for marine incidents which will be available to the member states of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) through its Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC). 

This contingency plan will be based on the fate and effects of oils and so-called hazardous and noxious substances (HNS) as controlled by the interaction of their physicochemical properties with atmosphere, sea and shorelines; the means by which such releases may be curtailed; the effectiveness of release- response equipment and techniques assisted by natural evaporation, dispersion, solution and bio/ oxidative degradation; and the means by which recovered materials may be recycled or processed for recycling/disposal should viscosity necessitate recovery: all such knowledge having been acquired by laboratory, sea and shoreline experimentation with oil/HNS released deliberately and/or by incidents.

However, knowledge-based contingency planning for restoration of the marine environment to its pre-incident state as quickly and cost-effectively as possible has thus far been thwarted by beliefs that organism contact with oil/HNS causes species-extinction/ecological-disaster; that dispersants increase such contact by increasing natural dispersion rates and thus must be prohibited or limited to arbitrary deepwater-distances from shore, despite the direct coating of sea/shoreline organisms being prevented or reduced by dispersion whether natural or dispersant induced; that oil/HNS and dispersants are toxic despite their biodegradation to carbon dioxide and water being but a small component of the entire biomass degradation which only oxygen-depletion interrupts to form so-called fossil fuels.

Thus, to prevent knowledge-based planning being thwarted by belief-based objections this time round, ISCO now invites environmental NGOs to differentiate belief from knowledge by the reality-evaluation which transforms the former to the latter as in craftsmanship, science and technology; to differentiate environmental knowledge from environmentalist belief by noting the presence or absence of reality-evaluation; to accept the environmental knowledge which already refutes some environmentalist beliefs; to transform remaining beliefs to positive or negative knowledge by reality-evaluation or to suspend them pending this transformation.  Document OPRC-HNS/TG 14/5/5 thus definitively identifies these beliefs and derives hypotheses from them to facilitate their reality-evaluation.

In brief, the questions to be answered are as follows.  Why should we continue to expect species-extinction/ecological-disaster when neither has arisen in the 45 years since the Torrey Canyon Incident? As to physical coating by oil/HNS, why should we believe in such extinction/disaster while the numbers of individuals thus killed per species have yet to be compared with the annual death/birth rates which maintain species populations at current levels?  As to exposure-concentrations to oil/HNS, why should we believe in such extinction/disaster while the thickness of floating layers limits them to producing no more than 100ppm were they to be instantaneously dispersed/dissolved into the top metre of the sea, while the actual concentrations in the top metre are of the order of 10ppm oil and 0.5ppm dispersant at the operational oil: dispersant application ratio of 20:1, while these diminish to zero by depth-dilution and biodegradation, and while the concentrations needed to measure LC50 values are 2-3 orders of magnitude higher than those only transiently present in the top metre?  Again why should we expect such extinction/disaster on shore while re-colonisation of shorelines by planktonic life-stages is unending?  Yet again, why should we believe in anthropogenic global warming while photosynthesis and biodegradation continuously recycle carbon dioxide through the atmosphere and the total sea and land biomass, while the Urey reaction product and its volcanic decomposition recycle carbon dioxide through the atmosphere and carbonate rock, and while we combust only part of a fossilisation but for which its carbon dioxide equivalent would already be recycling through the atmosphere biologically and geologically.  Document OPRC-HNS/TG 14/5/5 suggests that the above beliefs be reality-evaluated as specific hypotheses if they have not already been refuted by current knowledge. 

Thus, NGOs are invited by ISCO to accept knowledge, to reject beliefs already refuted by knowledge, to reality-evaluate remaining beliefs to positive or negative knowledge or to suspend them pending such reality-evaluation, and thus to reply to ISCO at info@spillcontrol.org

 

 

ISSUE OF DECANTING SETTLED-OUT WATER DURING OIL SKIMMING OPERATIONS RAISED AT IMO MEPC MEETING (8/10/12)

The ISCO delegation to MEPC64 presented its paper highlighting the problems faced by masters of skimming vessels when prohibited from discharging settled-out water during operations to recover oil spillage.

The hoped-for outcome was that MEPC would recognise these problems and refer the matter back to the OPRC-HNS Technical Group with an instruction to develop guidelines with the aim of making it easier for responders to legally decant settled-out water and thus realise the net environmental benefit of being able to continue oil recovery.

The development of such guidelines to ensure that decanting operations will be carried out in a proper and responsible manner, could have paved the for MEPC guidelines for such decanting, if not for an amendment to MARPOL Annex 1.

As things stand MARPOL Annex 1, regulation 4, paragraph 3 does allow individual governments to authorise decanting in specific oil spill combating situations but, for numerous reasons, this clause is hardly ever exercised.

One of these may be an understandable reluctance by member states to accept responsibility for giving a “carte blanche” without agreed safeguards.
 
Nine delegations spoke in response to the ISCO Paper but the general gist was that MARPOL Annex 1 had no Unplanned Output in regard to international shipping, was thus not a candidate for amendment and that the existing provision for member states is adequate.

Under this circumstance the matter will not be passed back to the Technical Group.

ISCO will now independently work on the development of the necessary guidelines, and make them available to individual nation states for voluntary adoption within national oil spill response contingency plans.

A report by Member of the ISCO Delegation to MEPC, Dr Douglas Cormack, is given within the ISCO News section of the ISCO Newsletter Issue 355. You can find this in the Newsletter archive on the ISCO website.

 

 

INTERNATIONAL RESPONSE RESOURCE INVENTORY   (8/10/12)

Alert – A new post has been added to the RRI Correspondence Group page.  Members should log in, go to the IMO Section and select Work Groups and RRI Project.

The purpose of the Correspondence Group is to assist ISCO in relaying the views of our members as the project develops and to help define how ISCO can most effectively ensure that the private sector within the spill response community makes a positive contribution to this important development for streamlining the mobilisation of spill combat resources during major incidents.

In the midst of a very large oil spill, having the right response equipment at the right time in the right location is crucial. Facility in acquiring essential equipment from one’s own nation is not enough. There needs to be an efficient process to source critical resources worldwide.

ISCO Members who are interested in this project can still join the ISCO Correspondence Group.  Please contact the Secretary  john.mcmurtrie@spillcontrol.org

 

OVERDUE SUBSCRIPTIONS (8/10/12)

Mary Ann Dalgleish, ISCO’s Membership Director, does not have an easy job and it’s made more even difficult when she has to spend time chasing up payment of overdue subscriptions. Please help her to reduce unnecessary work by paying subscriptions promptly when they are due.

 

 

REMOVAL OF MEMBERS WHO HAVE IGNORED PAYMENT OVERDUE REMINDERS (8/10/12)

Please be aware that the Secretariat is about to cancel the membership of a few who have ignored reminders to pay overdue subscriptions.

If you have not responded to reminders it will be assumed that you wish to discontinue your membership and you will be removed from the roll.  If failure to pay an overdue subscription is due to an oversight or other circumstance, please get in touch immediately.

The Secretariat does not cancel memberships lightly. The removal of a member (and reinstatement if outstanding fees are settled) entails a considerable amount of work in updating records, mailing lists and website entries.

 

 

 ISCO’S PROFESSIONAL RECOGNITION INITIATIVE HAS BEEN ACTIVATED (1/10/12)

Over the last months a great deal of work has been done to refine and further develop the criteria and process under which individuals in the spill response industry can gain professional recognition. 

 ISCO President David Usher has said “This fills a long felt need and will help meet the aspirations of many in the industry who have long felt that their qualifications and experience should be recognised. The creation of professional memberships will encourage all who are making a career in the field of oil and chemical pollution control to take pride in their chosen profession”.

Students, apprentices and trainees can join ISCO as student members and pursue a career development path that, as qualifications and experience are gained, can lead to eligibility for Associate Membership (AMISCO), Membership (MISCO) and, eventually, Fellowship (FISCO

All who have the relevant qualifications and the required level of experience can apply for Professional Membership of ISCO. The organization offers independent validation and integrity. Each grade of membership reflects an individual’s professional training, experience and qualifications. Academic qualifications are not a requirement if applicants can demonstrate the necessary levels of competence through their experience, skills and professional development.

You can learn more about Professional Membership by clicking HERE  and if you visit the ISCO website at http://www.spillcontrol.org  you can find more about the assessment criteria, code of conduct and other matters, and download an application form. Select Membership on the menu on the left hand side of the page, then go to Professional. You should also look at the pageClasses of Membership  Applications will be assessed by the Membership Standards Committee upon payment of a non-refundable Assessment Fee (see under Subscriptions)

The Membership Standards Committee will process applications at quarterly intervals and the cut-off date for receiving the first batch of applications is 31 December 2012.  Priority will be given to individuals who have already indicated their intention to apply for Professional Membership of ISCO.

 

 

NEW WEB PAGE CREATED FOR THE ISCO CORRESPONDENCE GROUP ON THE INTERNATIONAL RESPONSE RESOURCE INVENTORY PROJECT (24/9/12)

The ISCO Secretary has written to all of the twenty-two ISCO Corporate Members who have advised their interest in being part of the ISCO correspondence group. The purpose of the Correspondence Group is to assist ISCO in relaying the views of members  and help define how ISCO can most effectively ensure that the private sector within the spill response community contributes ideas and recommendations in regard to this important project for streamlining the mobilisation of spill combat resources during major incidents.
The new RRI web page can be accessed within the Members’ Area of the ISCO website. You will need to log in and select IMO from the menu on the left hand side of the home page, then select Work Groups and finally, RRI project.
The web page takes you through the history of the RRI concept and will be updated as the project develops.
For members who have not yet joined the Group, it’s not too late.  Send an email to john.mcmurtrie@spillcontrol.org

 

 

ISCO WELCOMES NEW MEMBERS (17/9/12)

Since ISCO last announced new members at the end of June, we are pleased to welcome some additional new members –  

New Corporate Member

Oceanstar Energy Services Ltd. (Lagos, Nigeria)
Crest Ecomaterials Ltd. (Hefei, China)
Nortek BV (The Netherlands)

New Individual Members

John Bassey David (Eket, Nigeria)
Felicia Mogo (Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency)

New Student Members

Mathew Nkem Ikediashi (Studying at Lancaster University) 

 

 

ISCO DELEGATIONS TO IMO OPRC-HNS TG14 and MEPC 64 MEETINGS.  (3/9/12)


ISCO President  David Usher,  Secretary John McMurtrie and Honorary Member Dr Douglas Cormack will be representing ISCO at the IMO OPRC-HNS Technical Group meeting which takes place over 24-28 September 2012.
ISCO President David Usher and Honorary Member Dr Douglas Cormack will be representing ISCO at the IMO MEPC meeting  which runs from 1st  to 5th October 2012.

 

 

 REAR ADMIRAL M. L. STACEY, CB (27/8/12)

Michael Stacey, a member of the ISCO executive committee and one of our most stalwart supporters is in hospital having recently suffered a serious stroke. 
He is making good progress towards recovery and your Secretary has been helping to keep his friends updated.

If you would like to receive news, please send an email – john.mcmurtrie@spillcontrol.org

I am sure that members and readers will join in sending Michael best wishes.

 

 ISCO MEMBER OF COUNCIL TO INTRODUCE ISCO AT OIL SPILL INDIA 2012 (20/8/12)

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ISCO’s recently elected Member of Council representing India will be speaking at the forthcoming Oil Spill India Conference taking place at the Holiday Inn Resort at Goa over 13-15 September 2012.  Capt Sekhar strongly supports ISCO’s aims and hopes that, by informing attendees at the conference about the organization, he will be able to help ISCO to grow its membership in India. Capt. Sekhar has been managing director of AlphaMERS Pvt. Ltd. since 2010. He began his sea-going career as a cadet in 1980 and progressed through the ranks in the Merchant Navy gaining experience in tanker operations as a junior and senior officer.  Among his qualifications he is an experienced auditor for ISO 9001, ISO 14001, ISM Code, ISPS Security Code. He is a trained marine incident investigator and experienced in tanker fleet risk management. The full name of his company, which is based in Bangalore, is Alpha Marine Emergency Services Private Limited. The company provides pollution control services for the marine industry.

 

INTERNATIONAL RESPONSE RESOURCE INVENTORY – DEADLINE EXTENDED  (30/7/12)

Are you a response contractor, equipment manufacturer or spill response expert ?

The deadline for Corporate Members of ISCO to register their interest in joining the ISCO Correspondence Group has been extended.

As reported in previous issues of the ISCO Newsletter, an international group has stared to work on the creation of an international Response Resource Inventory (RRI) for spill response. The initiative is part of a project introduced at the IMO Marine Environment Protection Committee by the delegation of the United States.

The Deepwater Horizon (DWH) mobile offshore drilling unit (MODU) oil pollution incident highlights the importance of international stakeholder planning and coordination as a method to ensure maximum resource availability and utilization during a catastrophic oil spill or hazardous substance event.  Several nations stepped forward to assist the United States during the course of the incident.  These offers included equipment, technical expertise, and general assistance.  The generosity of support from the international partners of the United States cannot be overstated, however, the process for requesting and receiving emergency assistance during DWH was proven ineffective and antiquated.  Given today’s robust worldwide oil exploration initiatives and transportation patterns, the international community must be prepared to address the challenges faced by responders under a myriad of conditions.

Lessons learned from the DWH incident indicate a need to develop collaborative processes regarding cooperation, in particular, robust mechanisms for handling and coordinating international offers of assistance during a major pollution incident.  Using the International Convention on Oil Pollution Preparedness, Response and Cooperation (1990 OPRC) as a basis for the establishment of such guidelines provides the mechanism for such an undertaking.  The guidelines will address the challenges of ensuring situational awareness of the incident among Member States, while effectively supporting the response resource needs of the affected Member State.  The guidelines should identify common terminology that assists the Member State in identifying resources needed and the status and disposition of available resources.  The guidelines should also address issues related to customs and trade issues, transport logistics, categories for offers, mobilization and demobilization.  Furthermore, the guidelines should identify a specific process for costing, invoicing, and paying for resources provided.  Ideally, this would lead to the establishment of a Resources Inventory System.

The initiative was further progressed at the OPRC-HNS Technical Group Meeting in March 2012 when several delegations, including ISCO, agreed to form a Correspondence Group to work on the project and present recommendations to the next meeting of the Technical Group in September 2012.

As the organization representing the international spill response community, with a membership that includes most of the world’s leading spill response contractors, equipment manufacturers and consultants, ISCO is planning to focus its work on the proposed Response Resource Inventory and specifically to concentrate on the resources available from the private sector.  ISCO is forming an internal working group and over the coming weeks and months will be consulting with interested members on how best to move forward. It is anticipated that response contractors, manufacturers and consultants will be quick to realize the commercial advantages of being part of this project.

In the paper on International Assistance submitted by the US delegation to the March 2012 meeting of the IMO OPRC-HNS Technical Group the authors identified five groupings for classifying international offers of assistance …

1    Government to Government 
2    Private sector to private sector 
3    Private sector to Government 
4    Private sector-through-Government to Government 
5    Offers coordinated by Regional Organizations on behalf of governments.

… and the initial thinking of the ISCO delegation is that ISCO should focus its efforts on the groupings 2, 3 and 4.
Clearly, the project will be of extreme interest to manufacturers of response equipment and materials and contractors that own significant stockpiles. The definition of resources also includes individuals with relevant knowledge and experience.

 Discussions have begun within the Working Group to address the questions of how inventory information should be collated – broad categories, types, and the use of universally accepted terms in defining resources. Also how the resource inventory should be held, accessed and maintained.  It will take time, probably at least two years, to resolve these issues but the international community represented by ISCO has a direct interest in a successful outcome.

Your Secretary has recently written to all Corporate Members on this matter but some have not yet responded – it may be that his letter was not received by the relevant decision-makers and, if you did not receive the letter, please contact the Secretary as soon as possible at john.mcmurtrie@spillcontrol.org

On this page you can find out more about the International Response Resource Inventory initiative by scrolling down to entries posted in May 2012

 

 

 

ISCO MEMBERS SPEAKING AT MARITIME SALVAGE & CASUALTY RESPONSE CONFERENCE  (9/7/12)

Several ISCO members will be speaking at the forthcoming 3rd Maritime Salvage & Casualty Conference taking place in London over 5-6 September, 2012.

ISCO members speaking at the event include John Noble, Conference Chairman and Individual Member of ISCO, Paul Pisani (Member of ISCO Executive Committee), Simon Rickaby (Member of ISCO Executive Committee), and Andrew Nash (from ISCO Corporate Member, Desmi Ro-Clean).

The Conference will provide an in-depth look into salvage, towage and casualty response. The event will focus on the most current developments in operational response to a salvage situation, considering some of 2012’s high-profile cases, and what impact these have had on the industry. Effective casualty response, as well as the latest legal and contractual issues will also be on the agenda. This year the meeting will include a discussion on the major incidents of 2012, reassessing operational approaches as well as looking at a new era of ‘social reporting.’

 

 

ISCO WELCOMES MORE NEW MEMBERS  (25/6/12)

Since ISCO last announced new members at the beginning of this month, we are pleased to welcome some additional new members –
 
New Corporate Members

International Environmental & Marine Services (Egypt)
Chatoyer Environmental (Australia)
Neocos Consulting (UK)
Chevron Indonesia Company (Indonesia)
Hong Kong Spill Response Technology Ltd. (China)
Power Plus Cleaning Solutions (USA)

New Individual Members

Captain D.C. Sekhar (India)
Richard Barta (USA)
John Ostergaard (Sweden)

 

 

A MESSAGE FROM ISCO PRESIDENT, DAVID USHER du2.jpg(18/6/12)

Here are some thoughts I’d like to share with you about ISCO’s past and future.

When ISCO was founded in 1984, its focus was support of government agencies in dealing with environmental issues.  Since then, our mission has expanded to serve as a voice for the response industry as well as providing advice and support to national governments and international organizations.   This reflects the growing sophistication and complexity of our profession. 

 In 2005, the organization re-launched itself, and what followed was an increase in membership and in readership of the ISCO Newsletter.

 In 2007 we were granted consultative status with IMO as an NGO for oil and hazardous substances pollution control activities, and we’re very pleased that IMO acknowledges our participation.

Recently, our presence at the various spill control conferences has led more professionals to become aware of and appreciate the information ISCO provides in the weekly newsletter.  This has encouraged us to consider inaugurating an international conference next year.

Now we are ready to start up our Professional Membership initiative, which has been requested by many who are active in pollution control. 

 I’m very proud to be associated with John McMurtrie, our Secretary and Editor, and want to acknowledge him for his tireless efforts and commitment in what we are doing for environmental issues.  He is a driving force in helping the membership grow, something we need to support these activities and programs.

We’re thankful for the participation of all the members we have, and we encourage those who are not yet members to join.  This is an exciting time for ISCO.

 

 

 ISCO WEBSITE CHANGES ARE ON THE WAY

Plans are under way to introduce some important changes in the ISCO website. A new feature – Country Pages – is to be introduced within the Members’ Area and will be designed to help Members in each country to network and get to know each other better.

In preparation for the delayed implementation of the Professional Membership initiative new pages are being created – About Professional Membership ■ Application Form ■ Code of Conduct  ■ Assessment Guidelines ■ Appeals Policy ■ Complaints Procedure.

On the advice of our insurers and legal advisors, new ISCO Terms and Conditions are also being introduced and will be accessible on the updated website.


 

 

 HAVE YOU CHECKED YOUR ENTRY IN THE ISCO INTERNATIONAL DIRECTORY?  (4/6/12)

All Corporate Members of ISCO should check their entries.  The International Directory has just been updated and it is possible that there may be some mistakes or omissions.

Company entries are in four categories –  To view your entries click on the headings below in the International Directory menu on the left hand side of the page

CONSULTANTS

EQUIPMENT & MATERIALS

RESPONSE ORGANISATIONS

TRAINING PROVIDERS

Things you should check –

1. Are the hyperlinks to your website working correctly?
2. Is your company appropriately listed in the various categories?
3. Are there any errors that require correction?

Please contact info@spillcontrol.org  to report any errors and request corrections to be made.

Entries are free of charge for Corporate Members but our IT contractor will make a one time only charge of £20 for uploading banners.  If you don’t have a suitable banner, one can be created for only £100.

If you are an individual member providing services in one or more of the four categories and would like to be listed in the International Directory, you will need to apply for Corporate Membership.

Non members can advertise in the International Directory at a cost of £500 per entry per annum, but for most non-members the most economical way to secure a listing in the directory is be to become a Member. Check the rates below –

Corporate (> 500 employees) £ 1,650  or $ 2,600  or € 1,900 
Corporate (100-499 employees) £ 1,320  or $ 2,100  or € 1,500 
Corporate (50-99 employees) £ 660  or $ 1,100  or € 765 
Corporate (10-49 employees) £ 330  or $ 530  or € 405 
Corporate (< 10 employees) £ 165  or $ 270  or € 190 

As a Corporate Member, you can have free entries in one or more of the relevant categories.

 

ISCO WELCOMES NEW MEMBERS  (4/6/12)

Over the last few months ISCO has welcomed the following new members –


Industry Partners

INTERTANKO
University of Petroleum & Energy Studies (India)

Corporate Members

Ikaros Cleantech AB (Sweden)
Crucial Inc. (USA)
KBKM & Associates (USA)
Clean Harbors (USA)
Enviro Voraxial Technology Inc. (USA)
Eco Strategic Consultants (Australia)
Edge Group (UK)
Maritim Miljo-Beredskap AS (Norway)
Dim. G. Lignos & Co. (Greece)
Swire Emergency Response Services (Dubai

Marine Response Alliance (USA)
Pelagic Solutions Ltd. (Belize)
International Environmental & Marine Services (Egypt)

Honorary Member

Dr Wierd Koops (Netherlands)

Individual Members

Carlos Sagrera  (Uruguay)
 Dwight Lindley (USA)
Heather Parker (USA)
Muhammad Saber (Saudi Arabia)
Justin Maxwell (USA)
Prof. Chijioke Ikokwu (Nigeria)

 

 

 ISCO AT CLEAN PACIFIC CONFERENCE & EXHIBITION AT LONG BEACH CALIFORNIA  (21/5/12)

clean_pacific_2012_1.jpg

 

 

 

 A happy moment at the ISCO booth  – From left to right – Will Kohnen (Seamagine), George Zhang (Crest Ecomaterials, China), John Allen (Executive Director, SCAA), David Usher (President,  ISCO), Charles Kohnen. (Seamagine)

cp2.jpg

In a telephone call last Saturday night, ISCO President David Usher reported that ISCO had a very successful presence at Clean Pacific.

David Usher was pleased to be able to meet up with many ISCO members attending the event and to discuss the various new initiatives that ISCO is pursuing on behalf of our members.

 

He said that Mary Ann Dalgleish (ISCO Membership Director) had received many enquiries from prospective new members. 
He also said that several individuals had added their names to the growing list of people in the spill response community who wish to apply for Professional Membership of ISCO as soon as this becomes available.

The traditional draw for a bottle of fine malt whisky (Glenlivet this time) was won by Jane Ellen Delgado of OHMSETT.  

Pictured left  – ISCO President David Usher with Jean Cameron of Pacific States, British Columbia Oil Spill Task Force.  Jean will soon be retiring from the Task Force.  Picture below – From left to right, Will Kohnen (Seamagine), David Usher (President, ISCO), Charles Kohnen (Seamagine), Peter Eriksen (Norbit US Ltd.), Bill Hazel (MPC Corp.)

cp3.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CREATION OF AN

 

 

 

 

 

 

INTERNATIONAL INVENTORY OF SPILL RESPONSE RESOURCES (21/5/12)

The background was given in the front page news report in last week’s ISCO Newsletter. If you didn’t see this, you can access Newsletter 334 on the ISCO website athttp://www.spillcontrol.org

In the paper on International Assistance submitted by the US delegation to the March 2012 meeting of the IMO OPRC-HNS Technical Group the authors identified five groupings for classifying international offers of assistance …

1 Government to Government
2 Private sector to private sector
3 Private sector to Government 
4 Private sector-through-Government to Government
5 offers coordinated by Regional Organizations on behalf of governments.

… and the initial thinking of the ISCO delegation is that ISCO should focus its efforts on 2.3 and 4 above.

Clearly, the project will be of extreme interest to manufacturers of response equipment and materials and contractors that own significant stockpiles. The definition of resources also includes individuals with relevant knowledge and experience. 

Discussions have begun within the Working Group to address the questions of how inventory information should be collated – broad categories, types, and the use of universally accepted terms in defining resources. Also how the resource inventory should be held, accessed and maintained.  It will take time, probably at least two years, to resolve these issues but the international community represented by ISCO has a direct interest in a successful outcome.

One option could be that, in order to make progress, an interim template be created that would allow the work of collating information to begin more or less immediately. ISCO is consulting with others in the Working Group and also intends to explore the issues with its members and the Secretary will be sending out a letter in the near future.

 

CREATION OF AN INTERNATIONAL INVENTORY OF SPILL RESPONSE RESOURCES

An international group has started to work on the creation of an international Response Resource Inventory (RRI) for spill response. The initiative is part of a project introduced at the IMO Marine Environment Protection Committee by the delegation of the United States.

The Deepwater Horizon (DWH) mobile offshore drilling unit (MODU) oil pollution incident highlights the importance of international stakeholder planning and coordination as a method to ensure maximum resource availability and utilization during a catastrophic oil spill or hazardous substance event.  Several nations stepped forward to assist the United States during the course of the incident.  These offers included equipment, technical expertise, and general assistance.  The generosity of support from the international partners of the United States cannot be overstated, however, the process for requesting and receiving emergency assistance during DWH was proven ineffective and antiquated.  Given today’s robust worldwide oil exploration initiatives and transportation patterns, the international community must be prepared to address the challenges faced by responders under a myriad of conditions.

Lessons learned from the DWH incident indicate a need to develop collaborative processes regarding cooperation, in particular, robust mechanisms for handling and coordinating international offers of assistance during a major pollution incident.  Using the International Convention on Oil Pollution Preparedness, Response and Cooperation (1990 OPRC) as a basis for the establishment of such guidelines provides the mechanism for such an undertaking.  The guidelines will address the challenges of ensuring situational awareness of the incident among Member States, while effectively supporting the response resource needs of the affected Member State.  The guidelines should identify common terminology that assists the Member State in identifying resources needed and the status and disposition of available resources.  The guidelines should also address issues related to customs and trade issues, transport logistics, categories for offers, mobilization and demobilization.  Furthermore, the guidelines should identify a specific process for costing, invoicing, and paying for resources provided.  Ideally, this would lead to the establishment of a Resources Inventory System.

The initiative was further progressed at the OPRC-HNS Technical Group Meeting in March 2012 when several delegations, including ISCO, agreed to form a Correspondence Group to work on the project and present recommendations to the next meeting of the Technical Group in September 2012.

As the organization representing the international spill response community, with a membership that includes most of the world’s leading response contractors and equipment manufacturers, ISCO is planning to focus its work on the proposed Response Resource Inventory and specifically to concentrate on the resources available from the private sector.  ISCO will be forming an internal working group and over the coming weeks and months will be consulting with interested members on how best to move forward. It is anticipated that response contractors and manufacturers will be quick to realize the commercial advantages of being part of this project.  Further developments will be reported in the ISCO Newsletter.

 

 

 

CURRENT ISCO INITIATIVES  (14/5/12)

Dr Douglas Cormack follows up last weeks reports on initiatives on decanting settled-out water during spill response and controlled release of oil/HNS for R&D purposes.  He describes the background to the ISCO initiative in developing a more effective approach to contingency planning that properly takes into account and applies available scientific knowledge.   

The R&D programme conducted by the UK’s Warren Spring Laboratory into Oil/HNS pollution and response produced the environmental knowledge now under review in Cormack’s Column.  However, environmentalist belief in species-extinction/ecological disaster has always opposed full use of this knowledge despite being refuted by it. 

Thus, we have long known that fully spread layers of Oil/HNS are too thin to produce more than a few parts per million in the top metre of the water-column; that these concentrations subsequently tend to zero by dilution and degradation within the column as a whole without significant toxic effects; that the numbers of heterotrophic bacteria at the base of the ecosystem/food-chain actually increase where oil component concentrations extend their food supply beyond the degradation-products of more complex species within the ecosystem’s organic carbon-cycle; that while oil slicks coat individual birds, the significance of the numbers thus dying are assessable only by comparison with the death/birth rates which maintain species populations; that environmentalists publish no such comparisons; and that, in any case, no incident has thus far produced the species extinction/ecological-disaster which belief expects and reality fails to deliver.  Nonetheless, it is this belief which prevents the decanting of water in incident response and the release of Oil/HNS for R&D.

However, even more paradoxically, this belief also inhibits use of safe-haven for the cargo/bunker transfer which, in preventing further release, reduces the coating of shorelines and organisms.  Again, this belief paradoxically inhibits the use of dispersants to increase the natural dispersion rates which do more to prevent the coating of shorelines and organisms than either dispersant application or mechanical recovery for which the encounter rates are limited by the layer-thinness which limits dispersed oil concentrations, whether natural or dispersant-induced.

Thus, on the basis of knowledge-acceptance/belief-rejection, ISCO is preparing a general-contingency/ incident-specific approach to response planning in which the latter will derive from the former. Thus, the contingency plan will identify the physicochemical parameters of Oil/HNS which control the floating, sinking, evaporating, emulsifying dispersing and dissolving rates of pollutants at sea and which predict the amounts remaining for dispersant treatment, mechanical recovery and/or stranding as functions of time and wind/tide vectors.  Further to stranding, the contingency plan will identify the shoreline parameters which govern pollutant adhesion/penetration, dispersion, recovery, downstream-processing, heterotrophic bioremediation, recycling and/or disposal.

Thus, the contingency plan will be a general repository of response knowledge available to all who need/want to know, while substitution of incident-specific values for the parameters relating to the substance released, and to the shorelines of interaction, will derive the incident-specific action/inaction plan for each incident in sequence.  Conversely, record keeping during implementation of incident-specific action plans will keep the general contingency plan up-to-date as a counter to the frequency of national staff changes and the infrequency of major incidents. 

The intention is to bring this knowledge-accepting/belief/rejecting approach to the attention of IMO and individual member states; to publicise the familiarity of ISCO/ISAA contractors with it; and to commend them to IOPCF, ITOPF, P&I Clubs etc as cost-effective alternates to the current non-cost-effective thraldom of reality-refuted belief.  

 

 

ISCO AT CLEAN PACIFIC THIS WEEK IN LONG BEACH, CALIFORNIA   (14/5/12)

If you are attending the Clean Pacific Conference and Exhibition please make a point of visiting ISCO at Booth 506.

ISCO President David Usher and Membership Director Mary Ann Dalgleish will be in attendance and ready to answer questions on the work that ISCO is doing for the international spill response community.  With so much going on, it’s a great time to join ISCO and gain the many benefits that membership brings.

ELECTION OF MEMBER OF ISCO COUNCIL FOR INDIA  (14/5/12)

Following on the recent election ISCO is pleased to announce that Captain D.C. Sekhar MNI has been appointed as the Representative of India on the ISCO Council.

We offer our congratulations to Capt. Sekhar on his appointment.

Capt. Sekhar has been managing director of AlphaMERS Pvt. Ltd. since 2010. He began his sea-going career as a cadet in 1980 and progressed through the ranks in the Merchant Navy gaining experience in tanker operations as a junior and senior officer.  Among his qualifications he is an experienced auditor for ISO 9001, ISO 14001, ISM Code, ISPS Security Code. He is a trained marine incident investigator and experienced in tanker fleet risk management.

Currently he is guiding in-house R&D in spill response equipment capabilities and developing a decision support system for the incident response on-scene-commander.

The full name of his company, which is based in Bangalore, is Alpha Marine Emergency Services Private Limited. The company provides pollution control services for the marine industry.

 

 

 

CURRENT ISCO INITIATIVES   (7/5/12)

• Decanting of settled-out water during skimming operations at sea

ISCO is working on a proposal to make it easier for response vessels to decant settled-out water.

The frustration experienced by responders was recently expressed by an internationally respected oil spill response expert – “It’s crazy when the sea is covered with oil as far as you can see, but it’s not only the US who enforce this rule. I have had the same answer from the Italian Coast Guard, as the rules are the same all over Europe. The rules are meant to cover normal operations and of course we all want to see low discharges into the sea, but there should be a dispensation for spills”.

In situations where an oil spill recovery vessel is obliged to cease recovery operations on account of available tank capacity being completely topped up with recovered oil-water mixture, the rules do not allow settled out water to be discharged (to permit continuation of oil recovery) unless oil content is below 15ppm.

In virtually all oil spill situations it is not practicable for skimming vessels to have onboard capability to process settled-out water to ensure oil content is below the permitted limit. In order to comply with rules, the only immediately available option is to halt oil recovery.

This said, there is in fact a clause in the current MARPOL rules that does allow governments to permit decanting in specific situations but it’s not well known and certainly not something that can be quickly and easily resolved in the midst of a response action. The experience of masters of skimming vessels and on-scene-commanders is that officials will automatically refuse permission.

ISCO is proposing that guidelines be developed to allow decanting in an environmentally responsible way in accordance with the principle of net environmental benefit.  ISCO’s aim would be to get the rules amended in such a way that a ship’s master or on-scene-commander acting in conformance with these guidelines would be empowered to decant settled-out water without fear of prosecution.

• Facilitating the use of oil at sea for research, equipment evaluation and testing

The need for more effective response technologies has been highlighted by the Deepwater Horizon spill in the Gulf of Mexico and the higher risks posed by  increased oil industry operations in hostile and sensitive environments.

The availability of laboratory and test tank facilities is good but this does not provide a complete answer. At-sea testing and scientific evaluation using oil is an essential component of some kinds of marine spill response R&D. Consider, for example, the large body of work conducted by the British Government’s Warren Spring Laboratory in developing techniques for aerial application of oil spill dispersants – this could not have been done without using oil at sea. A current example is the need for work being done to test and evaluate performance of new technology for sub-sea oil recovery

ISCO is not advocating making it easy for all and sundry to carry out experiments with oil at sea but we do see the need for guidelines to determine the parameters under which responsible parties can be allowed to conduct  important R&D work at sea under controlled conditions.

The end objective is to facilitate the development of more effective technologies for protection of the marine environment.


 

 

 

 ELECTION OF MEMBER OF ISCO COUNCIL FOR INDIA  (7/5/12)

Following on the submission of two nominations for the position of ISCO Member of Council for India, an election is currently under way amongst ISCO Members in India, the ISCO Council and Executive Committee to determine who will be appointed.  Each candidate has provided a CV/Personal Profile and a short statement saying how each proposes to further ISCO’s objectives.

The closing date for registering votes by email is Thursday 10 May and the successful candidate will be announced in the ISCO Newsletter of 14 May 2012.


 

 

 

 NEWS FROM WHERE YOU ARE  (7/5/12)

The editor of the ISCO Newsletter is grateful to Members and Readers who send in stories for publication – especially news from those parts of the world where due to availability in English language or access via the internet is difficult. The ISCO Newsletter has readers in more than 50 countries and your help in contributing news and articles that will be of interest to the international spill response community is always appreciated. Corporate members, government agencies and other organisations are especially requested to ensure that ISCO is on the mailing list for their press releases

 

 

 ISCO AT CLEAN PACIFIC 2012 – BOOTH 506   (30/4/12)

ISCO is a media sponsor of the Clean Pacific Conference and Exhibition which takes place over May 16-17 in Long Beach California.

You are invited to visit the ISCO Booth in the Exhibition Hall.  ISCO President David Usher and Membership Director Mary Ann Dalgleish will be there and ready to give you the latest news on new ISCO initiatives and activities.

David Usher is also presenting a paper at the Conference in Session 2D – Advances in On-water and Subsurface Recovery.  This will be at 10.30 a.m. on Thursday 17th May. The title of his paper is “Using Manned Submersibles to Respond to Submerged Oil Spills.  The co-authors of the paper are David Usher, Chairman, Marine Pollution Control Corp. and Bill Hazel, Director of Marine Services, Marine Pollution Control.


 

 

INTERESTING STORIES FOR PUBLICATION IN THE ISCO NEWSLETTER  (30/4/12)

Your editor is always on the lookout for interesting material.  

For example, have you carried out a spill clean-up of an unusual kind – perhaps one that required you to use innovative techniques in answer to particular problems.?  If you have a good story you would like to share with our readers, please send it in.

 

 

 

ISCO EDITORIAL POLICY  (30/4/12)

For legal and other reasons ISCO and the ISCO Newsletter cannot, and will not, endorse products and services provided by members or other third parties.

However, we do welcome contributions about new technical developments – one of ISCO’s aims is to disseminate information to our community on new products and services, technical improvements and the realisation of new ideas for improving spill prevention and response.

In order to be accepted for publication articles should be factual and written in concise, clear language. Articles with overt sales  promotion, exaggerated claims,  or other dubious content will not be accepted.

A well written article, with one or more photos, is a great way to tell the world about a new technological advance. It is good PR and it’s free. In allocating editorial space, ISCO Members are given priority (without their support this Newsletter would not be published) but contributions from non-members may also be accepted if publication conforms with ISCO’s educational objectives. 

 

 

 

ISCO IS LOOKING TO GROW NUMBER OF COUNCIL MEMBERS  (16/4/12)

 There are still many countries that are not represented on the ISCO Council and ISCO is looking for individuals willing to serve on the Council.

 The ISCO Council is composed of the appointed National Representatives of each country in which there are one or more Members of ISCO. The ISCO Council acts as an advisory and consultative body, assisting the Executive Committee on policy, new initiatives and other matters.

Countries and their representatives at this time are –

  AUSTRALIA   MrJohn Wardrop
  AZERBAIJAN   Mr Namig Gandilov
  BRAZIL   Capt. Bill Boyle
  CANADA   Dr Merv Fingas
  CHINA (Hong Kong)  Capt. Davy T. S. Lau
  CHINA (Mainland)  Mr Guobin Li
  CROATIA   Mr Darko Domovic
  EGYPT   Eng. Ashraf Sabet
  ESTONIA   Mr Torbjörn Hedrenius
  FAROE ISLANDS  Mr Pauli Einarsson
  GREECE   Prof. Harilaos  N. Psaraftis
  ISRAEL   Mr Dan Arbel
  KENYA   Mr Sanjay Gandhi
  LUXEMBOURG  Mr Joseph Braun
  NIGERIA   Chief Kola Agboke
  NORWAY   Mr Jan Allers
  SINGAPORE   Capt. Chris Richards
  SOUTH AFRICA  Mr Anton Moldan
  UAE    Dr Ali Saeed Al Ameri 
  UK    Mr Kevin Miller
  USA    Dr Manik Sardessai

Countries in which members are not yet represented on the ISCO Council include  –

BELGIUM   IRAN    MALAYSIA   URUGUAY
BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS IRELAND   MALTA
DENMARK   INDIA    NETHERLANDS
FINLAND   INDONESIA   SAUDI ARABIA
FRANCE   ITALY    SWEDEN
GHANA   KUWAIT   TURKEY
       
And in the many other countries in which ISCO does not yet have any members, there is an opportunity to become the first member in your country by joining ISCO and to submit your name for consideration as a possible Member of ISCO Council.

Any Member interested in serving on the ISCO Council should submit his/her name. Alternatively, you may recommend another person as a suitable candidate for consideration if he/she is willing to become a member and serve on the Council.

Persons wishing to be considered as members of ISCO Council should live in the country they wish to represent and should submit a short CV by email to the Secretary at info@spillcontrol.org  together with a short note describing what you feel you can do to support ISCO in achieving its objectives.

Members of Council act as the primary point of contact between the membership in each country and the Executive Committee, providing support in facilitating communications between ISCO and government ministries or agencies, and other national authorities, institutions or bodies in the countries represented. They encourage the formation of national (or regional) associations which bring together individual professionals, companies and other entities involved in spill control in their countries, as a means of raising levels of co-operation, knowledge and competence, facilitating sector recognition and creating channels of communication with governments. They are expected to promote ISCO’s objectives and encourage growth of ISCO membership in their countries, organising local meetings of members and supporting ISCO initiatives in the countries represented.

If you would like to have more information about ISCO’s objectives and the ISCO Council send an email to info@spillcontrol.org

 

 

 NEW MEMBER OF ISCO EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE AND APPOINTMENT OF TWO NEW MEMBERS OF ISCO COUNCIL   (19/3/12)

At the ISCO 2012 AGM held last week at the Interspill Conference in London, Members elected Capt. William Boyle MNI as a new Member of the Executive Committee.  Capt. Boyle has more than 25 years experience in oil spill response and is currently General Manager of Briggs Environmental Services, responsible for day to day National and International Operations, liaising with Clients and Governmental Agencies National and International. Other members of the ISCO Executive Committee are David Usher (President), John McMurtrie (Secretary), Rear Admiral M. L. Stacey CB, Daniel F. Sheehan, Marc K. Shaye, Jean-Claude Sainlos, M. Kerem Kemerli, Paul Pisani, Simon Rickaby and Li Guobin.

The meeting also approved the appointment of two new Members of ISCO Council – John Wardrop as Member of Council for Australia and Dark Domovic as Member of Council for Croatia.  John Wardrop is an international consultant to governments and industry with over 25 years experience in spill response. Darko Domovic, formerly Senior Programme Officer for REMPEC in Malta is now Technical Advisor to the Oil Spill Education Centre in Croatia.

The Guest Speaker at the meeting was Dr Merv Fingas, ISCO Member of Council for Canada and former Head of Emergencies Science at Environment Canada. In his illustrated talk on “Burning the Unburnable” he exploded the myth that a number of heavy oil types cannot be dealt with by in-situ burning.

ISCO President David Usher was unfortunately unable to be present but he opened the meeting via Skype AV link. He welcomed those present and spoke of the importance of ISCO in raising awareness of the role of professionals in the industry and the contribution they are making to protecting our environment.

ISCO Secretary John McMurtrie was acting Chairman and in the Secretary’s Report he welcomed recently joined new members including KBKM and Associates (USA), TerraTech (USA), Clean Harbors (USA), INTERTANKO, Eco Strategic Consultants (Australia), Enviro Voraxial Technology Inc. (USA), The University of  Petroleum and Energy Studies (India) and Heather Parker (USA).

The Secretary also reported on progress made with the ISCO Professional Membership initiative under which individual professionals in the Spill Response Community can achieve professional recognition – Fellow, Member, Associate Member, Student Member – in accordance with their experience and qualifications. Over the last few months more work has been done to enhance the candidate assessment process to ensure that it is rigorous and verifiable, rules, guidelines, and a code of professional conduct have been developed. Professional Membership provides a career path for new entrants to the industry. 
 

For individuals Professional Membership provides a visible mark of quality, competence and commitment.  Interested candidates are now being listed and some corporate members have indicated intention to sponsor employees.  The Meeting agreed to empower the Executive Committee to progress implementation of the initiative and the hope was expressed that this would soon be achieved.

The minutes of the AGM will be circulated to Members in the near future.

 

IMO OPRC-HNS TECHNICAL GROUP MEETING IN LONDON  (12/3/12)

imo_tg_meeting_march_2012.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In the picture: The ISCO Delegation to the IMO OPRC-HNS TG13 meeting. From left to right, standing – Dr Wierd Koops, Honorary Member, (Netherlands); Dr Merv Fingas, Member of ISCO Council for Canada; seated – John McMurtrie, ISCO Secretary (UK); David Usher, ISCO President (USA); Dr Douglas Cormack, Honorary Member (UK). Photo: Courtesy of Josée Lamoureux.

Last week delegations from 27 governments, REMPEC, EEC, IOPC Funds, MOWCA, and 7 NGOs participated in the 13th Session of the IMO OPRC-HNS Technical Group on the Implementation of the OPRC Convention and the OPRC-HNS Protocol and relevant Conference Resolutions.

Over 5 days the TG addressed a full agenda covering the development of Manuals and Guidance Documents, Training, Information Services and  
News (continued)

Exchange, and Technical Co-operation Implementation on OPRC and HNS.  The meeting was chaired by Alexander von Buxhoeveden (Sweden).

Work on the various agenda items was complemented by a number of special presentations given by members of the attending delegations –

• Dr Rebecca Coward of ITOPF gave a presentation on the clean-up operations on the west coast of Sweden following a collision involving the bulk carrier Golden Trader.
• Luigi Alcaro of ISPRA, Italy, gave a summary of events and operations following the Costa Concordia cruise liner accident in Italy.
• Dr Wierd Koops of ISCO and the University of Applied Sciences in the Netherlands described the scope of the new on-line chemical spill response manual and interactive HNS database and gave a demonstration of the system.
• Carlos Ormaechea of IMO MSD gave a presentation on the IMO Global Integrated Shipping Information System (GISIS).
• Alexander von Buxhoeveden (Swedish Coast Guard) gave a presentation on oil spills that occurred in Swedish waters during 2011, including a spill of Crude Tall Oil (by-product of wood processing).
• Marisa Fernandez (Spain) gave an update on the activities of the ARCOPOL Project (a project framed in the Atlantic Area Transnational Programme focused on the preparedness, response to and mitigation of accidental marine pollution impacting on the shoreline).  
• Marek Reszko from Gdynia, Poland briefed the meeting on the activities of the BRISK project which is concerned with the risk of spills of oil and HNS in the Baltic Sea.
• Annabelle Nicholas of ITOPF gave a presentation on the December 2011 oil spill following the grounding of the vessel in Brittany, France.
• Christophe Rousseau of CEDRE, France presented on the new Flume Tank and Ecotoxicology Test Bench created by CEDRE, describing the new developments at CEDRE and their functions.
• Burak Aykan from Turkey described Turkey’s oil and HNS response plan, the new bases and other facilities being developed in Turkey.
• Andrew Berry of Maritime New Zealand described the events and operations following the Container Vessel Rena impacting a reef  offshore Tauranga, New Zealand.
• David Usher of ISCO gave a presentation on submerged oil recovery, including new concepts and prototype testing at the OHMSETT facility in the USA.

NOTE: Readers wishing to access more information on topics described can use the following links –  Chemical Spill Response Manual       GISIS       BRISK      ARCOPOL     Maritime New Zealand   or drop a line to the Editor at  info@spillcontrol.org

 

ISCO AGM WILL BE HELD AT INTERSPILL 2012

The ISCO 2012 Annual General Meeting will take place at 5.30 pm on Wednesday 14 March 2012 in the Speakers’ Room, adjacent to the Interspill Conference Rooms at Excel, London. 

This year our Guest Speaker will be Dr Mervyn Fingas, ISCO Member of Council for Canada.  Dr Fingas was formerly Head of Emergencies Science Division at Environment Canada’s Environmental Technology Center in Ottawa, Ontario.

His illustrated talk will be on “Burning the Unburnable”. 

Members are requested to attend promptly in order that the Meeting can be concluded in good time to allow attendees to join up with friends at the various corporate hospitality events taking place later in the evening.

Non-members are also invited to come and will be made welcome. Light refreshments will be served.

 

ISCO 2012 AGM

The 2012 ISCO AGM will take place during Interspill in London. The Agenda and Meeting Papers (including Form of Proxy) have been sent out. If you have not received these please advise the Secretary.

Details of the meeting room, actual day and time will be advised ASAP. Interspill takes place over 13-15 March 2012.

ISCO WELCOMES NEW MEMBERS

ISCO welcomes the following new members who have joined recently –

· KBKM and Associates

· TerraTech

· Dr Wierd Koops

· Clean Harbors

· INTERTANKO

· Eco Strategic Consultants

· Enviro Voraxial Technology Inc.

ISCO AWARDED PERMANENT CONSULTATIVE STATUS AT IMO

ISCO has received a written confirmation that the Assembly of the International Maritime Organization has approved the award of full consultative status. ISCO received provisional consultative status at IMO four years ago and, since this time, has been actively representing the international spill response community at meetings of the Marine Environment Protection Committee and the IMO OPRC-HNS Working Group. 
For more information please see ISCO Newsletter 314 (accessible via NEWS on this website)

ISCO BOOTH AT CLEAN GULF 2012

ISCO welcomed many friends and made many new ones at the 2011 Clean Gulf Conference and Exhibition which ended on 1 December. 
The draw for a bottle of fine Scottish Malt Whisky was won by Johnny Hermandez of Mariflex USA Ltd. 

 

ISCO’S AD-HOC WORKING GROUP ON PROFESSIONAL MEMBERSHIP MEETS IN LONDON

Members of the Ad-hoc Working Group met at the Naval Club on the 7th of October 2011.

The plan to create new classes of Professional Membership was discussed at our 2011 AGM at IOSC in Portland Oregon, USA.  The initiative was approved  and welcomed by the meeting but a number of concerns were raised about (a) the rigorousness of the vetting process needed to ensure that applicants meet the required standards for the various classes of Professional Membership and (b) the adequacy of the proposed membership fees in relation to the costs of managing the Professional Membership initiative.

At a side-meeting some members of the Executive Committee also raised concerns about potential liability exposure that might arise if award of Professional Membership were to be wrongly perceived as some kind of “guarantee” on the part of ISCO regarding the professional competency of Professional Members and any acts or omissions for which they might be held to account.

Because of these concerns it was decided that the Professional Membership initiative be regarded as a “work in progress” and that its full implementation should be slowed down in order to allow time for issues to be addressed.

The London meeting of the Working Group, was attended by David Usher, Rear Admiral Stacey, John McMurtrie and Dr Douglas Cormack with apologies from Simon Rickaby, Dan Sheehan and Marc Shaye. An invited insurance advisor also attended to give advice on liability insurance.

The meeting resolved to (a) seek legal advice on appropriate disclaimers that should be included in Professional Membership documentation and related matters, (b) further investigate the obtaining of insurance cover to give protection against liability exposure, (c) to further assess the rigorousness of the vetting process for Professional Membership applicants, to progress finalising of the Rules and Guidelines relating to Professional Membership, and to produce a Code of Practice for Professional Members.  It was also agreed that the proposed fees for initial Assessment and Annual Membership of Professional Members be kept under review with an option to increase these fees at a later time should this prove necessary.  

ISCO LAUNCHES NEW CLASSES OF PROFESSIONAL MEMBERSHIP (14/05/11) 

ISCO will be launching new classes of Professional Membership at the IOSC Conference in Portland, Oregon, USA.  

More information will be sent out next week in a Special Edition of the ISCO Newsletter and details will also be posted on the ISCO website in the near future.  

ISCO WELCOMES NEW MEMBERS
 (10/1/2011) 

ISCO is pleased to introduce and welcome the following new members who have recently joined the organization. 

NEW CORPORATE MEMBERS 

· Imbibitive Technologies America Inc. – Manufacturers of the well known “Imbiber Beads” that are used to reduce health, fire and explosion hazards by encapsulating spills of volatile organic liquids.

· Welseas Africa Co. Ltd. – Marine Services and Trading Company, based in Tema, Ghana, West Africa.

· Clean Caribbean and Americas (CCA) – The Regional Oil Spill Response Organization whose members include most of the major international and regional oil companies and oil related facilities in the Caribbean and Latin America. Established in 1977 and located in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA, CCA holds a large inventory of equipment and supplies, and is capable of responding to a major oil spill anywhere in the region.

 

 

NEW INDIVIDUAL MEMBERS

· Funda Gurcuoglu – based in Istanbul, Turkey, Funda is on the staff of ISCO Corporate Member, Meke Marine Environmental Protection Services.

· Kevin Wang – based in Anaheim, California, USA, Kevin is with US Oil Clean-up, part of Power Plus Cleaning Solutions, providing equipment and services for oil spill response, and post-incident cleanup and remediation of Hazmat, Biohazard, Terrorist Attack, Fire, Water, Flood, Mould, and Asbestos.

· Wu Yue – based in Beijing, China. By way of introduction, Wu has provided the following information – Wu is Chief Representative Officer of ISCO Corporate Member, Lamor Group Ltd., Beijing Representative Office. “I joined the Lamor Group (Finland) in 2006. Since then I thoroughly dedicated myself to the spill response technology and OSR equipments promotion. I have participated in many oil spill emergency drills and oil spill response, especially in this July, On behalf of Lamor I took charge of organizing job on the scene to contain the oil outflows due to an oil pipeline blast in Dalian, a port city in North China. Also, I’m a member of China Institute of Navigation Committee of the Ship Pollution Prevention. I have given training lessons in Maritime Safety Administration (MSA) several times and a number of my papers were published in periodicals, for example, “Practical Equipment and Technology in Oil Spill Emergency Response” and ” Suggestions for Construction of Oil Spill Emergency Centers in Coastal Areas”

 

 

 

 

 

 

A TREASURE TROVE OF USEFUL INFORMATION FOR OIL SPILL RESPONDERS (16/12/10)

If you haven’t yet visited the site http://www.oilspillsolutions.org  you are strongly recommended to do so now.

For more than 30 years the creator of this site has responded to some of the worlds largest oil spills from oil tankers, offshore platforms, pipelines onshore and offshore and carried out training courses and consultancy work for the oil industry and government agencies in over 50 countries. This experience has been applied in developing a comprehensive source of knowledge and practical experience that will be of benefit to all who work in oil spill response.

 

The creator of the site says “It has taken a few years to put the site together and it is an ongoing thing.
My first thoughts were that when ever there was a spill there is so much misinformation for the public to access so a site with good reliable information and links to places where more reliable information can be found would help in getting the real story out there for them to read. There are many personal opinions and anecdotes in the sections to give it a human rather than a text book feel. It is also a useful tool to those within the oil spill community and those who are thinking of joining or have just joined”.

 

The address of the site has been added to the LINKS page of the ISCO website and is also in the Technical & Reference Section at http://www.spillcontrol.org/Joomla/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=51&Itemid=72

The owner of the Oil Spill Solutions website invites ISCO Members and other readers of the ISCO Newsletter to join by registering on the site.

 

 

 

 

 

 

TECHNICAL GUIDELINES ON SUNKEN OIL ASSESSMENT AND REMOVAL TECHNIQUES (13/12/19)

 

Neil Chapman of the UK Maritime & Coastguard Agency is now leading the Correspondence Group established by the IMO OPRC-HNS Technical Group to develop Operational Guidelines providing practical guidance to assessing and responding to incidents involving sunken oil on the sea floor. ISCO is participating in this task and is focused on gathering information on the practical experience and lessons learned by oil spill response professionals in the spill response community represented by ISCO at IMO.

 

At the last meeting of the Technical Group it was decided that the primary focus of work should be on negative buoyancy oil lying on the sea floor rather than oil contained in sunken wrecks. In terms of content, the Group agreed that it would also include references to other sources of information and a series of case studies. ISCO has previously appealed to its members and the wider response community and is grateful to those who have provided information. However, the recovery of sunken oil is a developing field of activity and, in order to produce the new IMO Technical Guidelines more information is needed. Within the community we represent are professionals who have direct experience of solving the problems involved; also manufacturers and other establishments carrying out R&D work to develop new techniques and equipment. ISCO would like to hear from you, so please drop a line to the Secretary at john.mcmurtrie@spillcontrol.org if you think you can help.

Some time ago ISCO developed a template to help in writing up case studies. This is currently under review for possible improvement but can be used. You can download the template from the Downloads Page at

http://www.spillcontrol.org/Joomla/index.php?option=com_docman&task=cat_view&gid=20

You can also have a look at contributions received so far from ISCO members and others by going to:

http://www.spillcontrol.org/Joomla/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=72&Itemid=117

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DG AND HAZMAT GROUP (6/11/10)

 

This week the ISCO Newsletter welcomed new readers – members of the DG & Hazmat Group, who responded to a message to the DG & Hazmat Group forum in which the ISCO Newsletter was given a mention. The DG & Hazmat Group has been an Associate Member of ISCO since 2006.

The free newsletter published by Don Johnston of the DG & Hazmat Group is one of the best sources of world-wide news on oil /chemical spills and related events. It comes out every few days and contains about 20 pages, mainly incident reports, often accompanied by dramatic colour photos and video links. How do interested parties become members? – It’s pretty easy, there are two ways this can be done, and the simplest is to send a blank email to: DangerousGoods-subscribe@yahoogroups.com. Alternatively, visit the Group’s Home Page at: http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/DangerousGoods/ and click on the icon “Join this Group”.

ISCO is delighted that members of the DG & Hazmat Group have joined the increasing number of people on the ISCO Newsletter mailing list, helping us to make progress towards our target of 10,000 readers worldwide.

If you find the Newsletter interesting and useful, think of friends and colleagues who would like to join our readers. Just click on http://www.spillcontrol.org and then on “Click Here to join our Mailing List”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
FREE DOWNLOADS – SPILL RESPONSE GUIDANCE & OTHER USEFUL THINGS (22/11/10)

 

Apologies are due to those who have recently visited the “Useful Downloads” page of the ISCO website. “Useful Downloads” allows users to download free tools, guidance documents and software for oil and chemical spill response – but the site, with some non-responsive links and other problems, was in need of overhaul.

 

This work has now been done and you can have a look by clicking HERE

“Useful Downloads” is capable of further development and improvement. It would be nice to have an index of the many topics addressed with a “jump to” facility making using the site easier and faster. Any volunteers willing to help?

 

 

 

 

 

 

ISCO PRESENTATION AT INTERNATIONAL BLACK SEA EVENT IN TURKEY (2/11/10)

On behalf of ISCO, Executive Committee Member, M. Kerem Kemerli gave an excellent presentation at the recent Black Sea Environment Protection event held in Turkey. The title of the presentation was “Integrated and Co-ordinated Response to a Prospective Disaster in the Black Sea. A short Power Point version of the presentation can be viewed by clicking HERE

 

 

 

 

MESSAGE FROM ISCO PRESIDENT, DAVID USHER (1/11/10)

david_usher.jpgThe 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 athttp://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.

 

 

 

OVERDUE SUBSCRIPTIONS

Members who have not yet renewed their membership subscriptions are requested to do so now.

In many countries you can now pay your subscription electronically. Go to the ISCO web site at www.spillcontrol.org

Click on MEMBERSHIP then SUBSCRIPTIONS. The automated payment system will accept the following payment cards – VISA / DELTA / ELECTRON, MASTER CARD / EUROCARD, AMERICAN EXPRESS, SWITCH / MAESTRO, SOLO. If you have a UK Sterling Bank Account, you may pay by sending a cheque payable to International Spill Control Organisation to ISCO Secretariat, Balbithan House, Kintore, Inverurie AB51 0UQ Scotland, UK. You may also pay by bank transfer of funds – for details please send Email to info@spillcontrol.org

 

 

IMO OPRC-HNS TG 11 AND MEPC 61 MEETINGS (27/9/10)

The 11th session of the OPRC-HNS Technical Group Meeting was completed last Friday with the approval by delegates of the TG11 report to be submitted at the 61st MEPC Meeting that starts on Monday 27September. The TG11 meeting ended with a presentation and vote of thanks to Mr Nick Quinn of New Zealand for his outstanding chairmanship of the TG over the last three sessions. Earlier in the proceedings, Mr Alexander von Buxhoeveden (Sweden) was unanimously elected as the new chairman and Mr Suh Woo Rack (Republic of Korea) as the vice-chairman for the year 2011, subject to the approval of MEPC. Delegates agreed that the quality of Mr Quinn’s leadership of the TG had been exceptional and wished him well in his new position with the Australian Marine Response Centre (AMOSC).

Work completed during TG11 included an oil spill waste management decision support tool; a joint IMO/IPIECA guidance document on sensitivity mapping for oil spill response; an operational guide on the use of sorbents; and guidelines for oil spill response in fast currents.

Presentations made during the meeting included a demonstration of a new computer-based model for support of marine HNS incident response (Dr Wierd Koops, ISCO); Deepwater Horizon (USA and IPIECA); the recent Barents Sea exercise (Norway and Russia); and the new Korean Oil Spill Training Facility (Mr Suh Woo Rack, Republic of Korea).

ISCO members will be interested to note that ISCO was invited to work with the delegations of REMPEC, USA, Spain and ITOPF in further developing a draft ISCO template for gathering information, lessons learned, and best practice relevant to marine HNS incident response, and to submit this document to TG12. ISCO, in association with other interested delegations, was also requested to continue its efforts to collate information on experience gained in marine HNS incident response and sub-sea oil recovery, relevant R&D and new technology. REMPEC is to provide a web platform for HNS-related information on its website but ISCO will, for the time being, continue to share information received with other delegations and interested parties by posting it on the IMO Work Groups HNS and Sub-Sea sections of the ISCO website.

The 61st Session of MEPC runs from Monday 27th September through to Friday 1st October and ISCO will be represented by Dr Douglas Cormack.

 

EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEETING AT IMO, LONDON

A meeting of the ISCO Executive Committee will take place at the IMO HQ in London at 1400 hrs. on Thursday 23rd September.

Members of Council have also been invited to attend.

 

 

 

 

IMO: OPRC-HNS TECHNICAL GROUP & MEPC MEETINGS (13/9/10)

The 11th Session of the IMO OPRC-HNS Technical Group (TG11) meets in London over September 20-24. The ISCO delegation, which includes ISCO President David Usher, ISCO Secretary John McMurtrie, Rear Admiral M. L. Stacey and Dr Douglas Cormack will be joined by Dr Wierd Koops, Head of the research department of Maritime, Marine and Environment and Safety management of the NHL university of applied science. Dr Koops is also a member of the joint ISCO-ISAA international working group on developing accreditation standards for HNS incident response and will be making a presentation at TG11 on a new computer-based model for support of marine HNS incident response. Dr Cormack will also be presenting a paper on Independent Training and Accreditation of Private Oil and HNS Spill Response Contractors

 During the week after TG11, the 61st Session of the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) runs from September 27 through to October 1.


 

 

 

APPEAL FOR YOUR HELP:  ISCO’S COMMITMENT TO IMO – URGENT NEED FOR MORE INFORMATION ON EXPERIENCE GAINED AND TECHNIQUES USED IN RESPONSE TO MARINE HNS INCIDENTS AND FOR SUB-SEA OIL RECOVERY. (19/7/10)

The eleventh session of the OPRC-HNS Technical Group meeting is fast approaching and we are disappointed to note that over the last few months there has been very little new information received from our members and other readers of the ISCO Newsletter. We would be grateful for your help. 

ISCO joined with other delegations in agreeing to support the IMO Secretariat in pursuing possibilities of obtaining data on HNS incidents, including near misses, in order to address data gaps that exist and to submit that information to future meetings of the Technical Group.
The availability of data on experience and lessons learned in response to marine HNS incidents and sub-sea oil recovery needs to be improved and the ISCO delegation took the view that within the response community represented by ISCO at IMO there should be a significant source of additional information.

Information gathered will be shared with other OPRC-HNS Technical Group delegates and used in the preparation of new IMO Technical Guidelines on marine HNS response, and on sunken oil assessment and removal techniques.

What we are looking for is short case histories, with emphasis on information on the techniques used,  problems encountered and lessons learned – the kinds of experience and knowledge that you won’t find in the textbooks. We are also interested in special equipment that has been developed to deal with marine HNS incidents, and for the assessment and recovery of sunken oils. 

If you can assist, please send information as a word document or PDF file to ISCO Secretary, John McMurtrie at john.mcmurtrie@spillcontrol.org  You can find templates for entering information at: http://www.spillcontrol.org/Joomla/index.php?option=com_docman&task=cat_view&gid=20

Please don’t worry about having to write a beautiful literary production – we’ll be happy to edit the grammar and spelling. If for reasons of commercial confidentiality you need to exclude details of clients, that will be OK – but we would like to know who you are – all contributions will be acknowledged and this is a way for you to raise your profile – it’s good to know who has the experience and knowledge in dealing with these matters. 

 

 

 

ISCO WELCOMES PERSGA AS A NEW MEMBER (5/7/10)

ISCO is pleased to welcome PERSGA (The Regional Organization for the Conservation of the Environment of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden) as a new member.

PERSGA is an official regional organization based in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, responsible for the development and implementation of regional programmes for the protection and conservation of the marine environment of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden, and was formally established in September 1996, with the signing of the Cairo Declaration by all cooperating parties to the Jeddah Convention.

Major functions of PERSGA include the implementation of the Jeddah Convention, the Action Plan, and the Protocol. It has also been given responsibility for preparation and implementation of the SAP and related activities. PERSGA has played an active role in promoting regional cooperation and has recently supported regional workshops concerning environmental assessment (EA), Marine Protected Areas, navigation risks and living marine resources. In addition, a series of national workshops have been sponsored by PERSGA to facilitate the development and review of Country Reports prepared as part of the SAP process.

 

 

 

ISCO RECEIVES MESSAGE OF THANKS FROM US NATIONAL INCIDENT COMMANDER, ADMIRAL THAD ALLEN (18/6/10)

Earlier this week ISCO received an email message of thanks from Admiral Allen. There has been an excellent response to the appeals for support for the ongoing response efforts in the Gulf of Mexico. The ISCO Committee thanks all the companies and professionals in a great many countries who have responded to appeals for ideas and information.


 

 

 

ISCO: ELECTION OF TWO NEW MEMBERS TO THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE (10/5/10)

At ISCO’s 2010 Annual General Meeting, held in London last week, Mr Li Guobin (Member of ISCO Council representing China) and Mr Simon Rickaby (Representative of Corporate Member Braemar Howells Ltd.) were elected to the Executive Committee of ISCO.

Upon his election to the Committee, Mr Li Guobin spoke in support of ISCO’s work and its relevance in China at a time when new legislation is giving added impetus to the raising of professional standards in spill response. He looks forward to making a significant contribution to the work of the organisation and to building ISCO membership in China. Due to injuries sustained while overseas, Mr Simon Rickaby was unfortunately unable to attend the meeting. All present expressed their sympathy and wished him a speedy recovery.

On completion of the business part of the meeting, the ongoing response to the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico was discussed at length. Mr David Usher, in his capacity as President of ISCO, has been greatly in demand by CNN, NBC and other media networks as an expert commentator. There has also been an excellent international response from members and others offering technical and other support to members of the Unified Command team.

For the very first time at an ISCO meeting, use was made of an audio link to enable members in other countries to join in the meeting via the internet. Minutes of the meeting will be circulated to members in the near future.

 

 

 

 

 

TORBJORN HEDRENIUS, MEMBER OF ISCO COUNCIL FOR ESTONIA (26/4/10)

The ISCO Secretary has just received a note from Torbjorn. Following on a stroke he has had to slow down his work but very much appreciates the ISCO Newsletter. He writes “You know I have worked with oil spills since I was 16 years old. I am now 61 years so it’s a fairly long time”. He is very interested in what’s going on and says “it’s a great pleasure to feel the contact with the “spill world”.

I am sure that I can speak for Torbjorn’s many friends in the spill response community in passing on our very best wishes.

 

 

 

 

ISCO 2010 AGM – MEETING VENUE AND TIME NOW CONFIRMED

The 2010 Annual General Meeting of ISCO will be held at 1400 hrs on Tuesday 4th May in the Sargent Room at the Naval Club, 38 Hill Street, Mayfair, London W1J 5NS.

The Agenda and other papers have been sent to all Individual Members and the listed representatives of Corporate Members.  If not received, please contact the Secretary.


 

 

 

ISCO WELCOMES NEW MEMBERS (12/4/10)

ISCO is pleased to introduce and welcome the following new members who have recently joined the organisation.

• Resolve Marine Group Inc. of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA (Corporate Member)
• Jude Egwuonwu of Manchester, UK (Individual Member)
• Kevin Waterman of Bulimba, Queensland, Australia (Individual Member)
• Ayles Fernie International Ltd. of Sevenoaks, Kent, UK (Corporate Member)
• Vikoma International Ltd. of Cowes, Isle of Wight, UK (Corporate Member)
• Roberto Giannini of São Paulo, Brazil, (Individual Member)
• Alex Cobra of São Paulo, Brazil, (Individual Member)
• Arkadiusz Talaska of São Paulo, Brazil, (Individual Member)
• Dante Neto of São Paulo, Brazil, (Individual Member)
• Mario Izidoro of São Paulo, Brazil (Individual Member) 

 

 

 

 

ISCO AGM SET FOR LONDON ON 4th MAY, 2010

ISCO Members should please note that ISCO’s 2010 AGM will be held in London on 4th May, 2010. Depending on the number of members advising their intention to attend, the meeting will be held at either the IMO HQ at Albert Embankment or at the Naval Club in Hill Street, Mayfair.

   
The Agenda and other meeting papers are under preparation and will be sent out to Members in the near future.

 

 

 

IMO: OPRC-HNS TECHNICAL GROUP MEETING

The tenth meeting of the IMO MEPC OPRC-HNS Technical Group (TG10) concluded on Friday 19th March, 2010. Work on the Publication checklist for new IMO manuals, guidance documents and training materials was completed ready for submission to MEPC 60. After final editing the Manual on Incident Command Systems (ICS) is planned for submission at MEPC 61. The Group progressed work on a broad range of other oil and HNS projects.

Technical discussions were leavened by a number of special presentations. One by the delegation of the United States on the Exxon Valdez incident, included the video produced by NOAA, and reviewed the response efforts by those who were directly involved. The observer from IMarEST gave an illustrated talk on the MV Newcastle incident, involving ferrous sulphate, a dry bulk cargo, which had fluidised and shifted whilst in transit, resulting in the production and leaching of sulphuric acid liquor within the vessel compartment.  The representative from Norway described the Full City incident, an oil spill that occurred off the coast of Norway in July 2009, involving the loss of 1113 m3 of oil.  The delegation of Sweden shared its experience in responding to the Linda incident, which involved the loss of four freight containers, three containing HNS, and the delegation of Australia gave an overview of the Montara incident which resulted in the loss of some 6.6 million litres of oil over a period of 108 days, until the well was finally capped.

ISCO presented a paper on the independent training and accreditation of private oil and HNS response contractors to the requirements of shoreline cleaning and it was noted that, in association with ISCO, a working group has been established by ISAA. It was agreed that ISCO will submit a further technical paper to TG 11. Going forwards, ISCO agreed to continue, alongside other delegations, with efforts to collate experience and lessons learned in response to marine HNS incidents and in dealing with sub-sea oil recovery.


 

 

 

ISCO DELEGATION TO IMO OPRC-HNS TECHNICAL GROUP MEETING (8/3/10)

TG10, the tenth meeting of the IMO OPRC-HNS Technical Group takes place over the week of Monday 15th March to Friday 19th March, 2010 at IMO Headquarters in London. The ISCO delegation will include David Usher (ISCO President), John McMurtrie (ISCO Secretary), Rear Admiral M. L. Stacey (Member of ISCO Executive Committee) and Dr Douglas Cormack (Honorary Member of ISCO).

 

 

 

IMO COUNCIL 103 MEETING ON 4th DECEMBER 2009

ISCO President, Mr David Usher will be representing ISCO at this meeting.


 

 

 

 

ISCO WELCOMES NEW MEMBERS

Since we last gave you news on new members of ISCO, we are now pleased to introduce and welcome the following new members

• CI Agent Solutions of Louisville, Kentucky, USA (Corporate Member)
• Hidroclean Serviços Marítimos of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (Corporate Member)
• Spill Tech Pty. Ltd. of Queensland, Australia (Corporate Member)
• Mr Neil Marson, Cleveland, UK (Individual Member)
• Dr Shahriar Ameri of Amirkabir University, Tehran, Iran (Individual Member)

 

 

ISCO CELEBRATES ITS 25TH ANNIVERSARY (2/11/09)


It’s a long time since representatives of the American, British, French and Swedish spill control associations (SCAA, BOSCA, SYCOPOL and SWEMARPOL) first met in 1983 at San Antonio to discuss the formation of ISCO.  The organisation was incorporated in London the following year as a not-for-profit international organisation with clearly defined objectives which included promotion of international co-operation and practical support for OPRC and other relevant IMO conventions. Further meetings took place over the following years at various locations including Aberdeen, London, Tampa, Valetta, and Long Beach. Practical outcomes included positive contributions to international co-operation during the Exxon Valdez spill (1989) and Gulf War pollution (1991).

In those days, ISCO membership was restricted to Trade Associations representing private sector companies. This was later seen as incompatible with the recognition that the fulfilment of ISCO’s objectives depended on involvement of both public and private sectors working together in a co-operative way. These considerations led in 2005 to the re-launch of ISCO with an amended constitution. Membership of ISCO was opened up to all entities, public and private, with a legitimate interest in furthering the objectives of the organisation. Another positive impact was that the cost of joining ISCO became more affordable, with especially low fees for smaller companies, government and academic organisations, individuals and students.

Today, ISCO is recognised as the only global organisation that is dedicated to members of the broader international spill response community. Currently, ISCO has members in thirty-three countries and is continuing to grow. Through its meetings, website, and newsletter the organisation provides significant benefits to its members. In addition to being part of a worldwide community of professionals that share a common interest, members are kept up to date on events, developing technologies, legislation, new trends and directions, and other items of mutual interest. They are alerted to opportunities for providing new products and services necessary for implementing legislation and meeting new challenges. ISCO promotes international co-operation and, through its network of members, assists governments and others by providing a rapid route for accessing and mobilising international support in any major pollution event. Most importantly, ISCO is a source of practical help in building response capacity and enhancing professional competency.

 

 

IMO INFO GATHERING ON MARINE HNS RESPONSE AND SUBSEA OIL RECOVERY

Response contractors and others that can contribute information to assist the OPRC-HNS Working Group can now download the information gathering templates. Simply go to the ISCO website athttp://www.spillcontrol.org and select DOWNLOADS from the menu on the left hand side of the page.  Your contribution will be acknowledged and it’s an opportunity for you to raise your profile. We need to know who out there has the know-how and experience. Don’t hide your light under a bushel !

 

 

ISCO HAS PRODUCED REPORT TEMPLATES FOR MARINE HNS INCIDENT RESPONSE AND SUBSEA OIL RECOVERY (21/9/09)

As previously reported in the ISCO Newsletter, ISCO is continuing to collate information on Marine HNS incident response and Subsea Oil Recovery as part of its contribution to the work of the IMO OPRC-HNS Technical Group. Rather than simply collecting statistical data, ISCO is focusing on the techniques used, problems encountered and lessons learned – information that will be of practical value in developing quality technical manuals. 

Now ISCO has developed new report templates that will help to collate the information in a standard format. Incident responders who can contribute to the knowledge base are invited to contactjohn.mcmurtrie@spillcontrol.org  ISCO also wants to hear from manufacturers, research establishments and consultants who are developing new technologies and equipment with application in HNS incident response or subsea oil recovery.


 

 

 

ISCO “MEET AND GREET” EVENT AT CLEAN PACIFIC CONFERENCE

On behalf of ISCO, Jeff Taylor from Corporate Member, Marine Pollution Control Inc. will be hosting an informal “Meet and Greet” gathering at Clean Pacific at 5 p.m. on Tuesday 15th September at the Oregon Conference Center.

It’s an opportunity for ISCO Members and others who are interested to meet up with each other. Refreshments and a snack will be provided.  We’ll look forward to seeing you.

 

 

ISCO: MARINE HNS INCIDENT RESPONSE EQUIPMENT AND TECHNIQUES (24/8/09)

At the IMO OPRC-HNS TG8 meeting held in London over 29th September to 3rd October, 2008, ISCO joined with other delegations in agreeing to support the Secretariat in collating information on response to HNS incidents in order to address data gaps that exist and to submit information to the future meetings of the Technical Group.


At TG9 in July 2009, ISCO was asked to continue this work as an ongoing project.

Information collected so far includes case histories of responses to incidents involving toxic sludge, MTBE, Naphtha, Sulphuric Acid and Freon (a CFC compound).

It is the international spill response community that has hands-on experience in dealing with HNS incidents – solving the problems and developing techniques that work – experience that will eventually be used in developing response guidance manuals.

ISCO wants to hear from its members and others that can make a contribution to our collective effort. We want to hear not only from contractors but also from manufacturers and researchers who are developing new equipment and technology for HNS incident response.

 

 

IMO: INDEPENDENT TRAINING AND ACCREDITATION OF PRIVATE OIL AND HNS SPILL RESPONSE CONTRACTORS (27/7/09)

ISCO representative at MEPC, Dr Douglas Cormack presented his paper “Independent Training and Accreditation of Private Oil and HNS Spill Response Contractors” to the IMO Marine Environment Protection Committee at its 59th Session. The Committee approved this paper for passage to the Technical Group for its next Session. He will now follow through with a graded assessment of Oil and HNS problems and their respective responses, as an Information Paper direct to the OPRC-HNS Technical Group, so that both papers can be discussed on this next occasion.

 

IMO OPRC-HNS TECHNICAL GROUP MEETING IN LONDON LAST WEEK (13/7/09)

The 9th meeting of the OPRC-HNS Technical Group (TG9) which ended 10th July was attended by delegations from 23 countries and 10 other organizations. Over the five days of the TG9 meeting delegates addressed a wide agenda of marine oil and HNS pollution related issues and agreed a report that will be submitted to the Marine Pollution Environment Committee (MEPC) this week. TG9 Chairman, Mr Nick Quinn (New Zealand) and Vice-Chairman, Mr Suh Woo Rack (Republic of Korea) were re-elected for the coming year.

 

ISCO’s efforts in collating information relating to the response to HNS incidents and to sub-sea oil recovery operations were acknowledged in the meeting report and the ISCO delegation has been asked to continue this work.

 

At this week’s MEPC meeting ISCO will be represented by Dr Douglas Cormack who will present a paper on “The Independent Training and Accreditation of Private Oil and HNS Spill Response Contractors”.

 

 

ISCO WELCOMES NEW MEMBERS (6/7/09)

Since we last gave you news on new members of ISCO, we are now pleased to introduce and welcome the following new members –

· Captain Thejo Sadhu Prakash of GSS Consultants Pvt. Ltd., Chennai, India.

· SpillGo Ltd., Co Wicklow, Ireland.

· Evolution Sorbent Products, Chicago, USA.

· UK Spill Ltd., the UK’s Spill Response Industry Trade Association.

· Mr Mauricio Padilha of Alpina Briggs Defesa Ambiental S/A

· Seacor Environmental Services Middle East Ltd.

· Mr Marco Formicola of Alpina Ambiental S.A., Brazil.

· Mr Colin Mackay of Envirocol, Glasgow, UK.

· T & T Environmental Technology, Ankara, Turkey.

· Tulip Environmental Services, Istanbul, Turkey.

· Mr Erik Halbert of Boston Strategies International, USA

· Mrs Melinda Pascale of Kymenlaakso University of Applied Sciences, Finland

 

 

ISCO DELEGATES AT FORTHCOMING IMO MEETINGS

ISCO President, David Usher, will represent ISCO at the IMO Council Meeting (29th June – 3rd July, 2009).

 

David Usher will also attend the OPRC-HNS Technical Group Meeting (TG9) over July 6-10, together with ISCO Secretary, John McMurtrie, ISCO Member of Council for the UK, Kevin Miller and Honorary Member of ISCO, Dr Douglas Cormack. ISCO has submitted an information paper to TG9, reporting on ISCO’s work to collate information on HNS incident response and sub-sea oil recovery experience.

 

Dr Cormack will be presenting an information paper at the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) Meeting (July 13-17). His paper is on the Independent Training and Accreditation of Private Oil and HNS Spill Response Contractors.

 

 

PROGRESS BEING MADE IN DEVELOPMENT OF CHEMICAL / HNS ACCREDITATION CRITERIA (8/6/09)

The joint working group established by the International Spill Accreditation Association (ISAA) in collaboration with the International Spill Control Organization (ISCO) has now been working as a correspondence group for nearly six months on the work of developing spill response accreditation criteria for assessing spill response organizations (SROs) involved in response to onshore chemical spills and marine HNS incidents.

The task is not an easy one and it is anticipated that the minimum accreditations standards for different categories of chemical / HNS responders (public and private) will be introduced in stages.

The Working Group includes internationally respected experts from USA, Canada, UK and the Netherlands:

•    Dr Merv Fingas, who has more than 25 years of spill response experience with Environment Canada where he was head of the Emergencies Science Division. He was appointed to the United States Academy of Sciences and is on the editorial board of the Journal of Hazardous Materials. Publications include The Handbook of Hazardous Materials Spills Technology and Survey of Chemical Spills Countermeasures.

•    Mr Kevin Miller, who, as Managing Director of HazmatLINK works with industry, emergency services and governments, providing advice and consultancy on planning and managing incidents involving hazardous materials. Prior to this he managed the United Kingdom’s National Chemical Emergency Centre (NCEC). In this role he was responsible for ensuring a rapid and professional response to over 1500 incidents per year. He was a member of the Department for Transport working group that developed the code of practice for security of dangerous goods transported by road and rail, assisted in the development of the European Emergency Response Intervention Cards (ERICards), and peer reviewed the CDC/NIOSH’s emergency response safety and health database.

 

•    Dr. Manik Sardessai, Vice President of Technical and Environmental Affairs and Director of Training of Detroit, Michigan, USA based Marine Pollution Control (MPC) Corporation, responsible for developing both in-house and client training programs, including 40, 24, and 8 Hour Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (HazWoper, CFR 1910.120) courses, DOT, Incident Command Systems (ICS), and Chemistry classes. As a Faculty, he has taught both undergraduate and graduate level courses at Wayne State University, U.S.A. and University of Saskatchewan, Canada. Since 2002, he has been a member of Chemical Transportation Advisory Committee (CTAC) (USCG, USA).

•    Dr Wierd Koops is Professor in Maritime, Marine, Environmental and Safety Management at the Maritime Institute Willem Barentsz. He also is an independent consultant and manager of Accidental Spill Control Consultancy vof with specific expertise on accidental or deliberate marine pollution. He has more than 30 years of professional experience in oil and chemical spill response. He is an experienced project manager, with extensive international experience in all the aspects of emergency management: prevention, preparation, response and evaluation. He has broad experience in international projects (Helcom, Bonn Agreement, Barcelona Convention, IMO and EU).

•    Mr Nick Bailey joined DV Howells in 2003 as a chemicals expert with many years international incident response experience. He also sees to it that the Chemical / HNS spill response units are maintained with the most appropriate and up to date equipment.
Nick’s track record of managing chemical response scenarios is impressive. Aside from dealing with a wide range of incidents, he is also heavily involved with chemical, biological and hazardous incident response services worldwide.

 

•    Mr Bill Atkinson is Head of Emergency Response at the National Chemical Emergency Centre (NCEC), AEA Technology. He is responsible for a team of experts providing chemical emergency response advice worldwide to emergency services, chemical industry and the transport sector

 

Development of the new standards will extend the existing ISAA accreditation disciplines that are focused on oil pollution and include freshwater spills, shoreline clean-up, marine spills, groundwater pollution, on-land spills and road/rail tanker incidents

ISCO AGM: NEW MEMBER OF COUNCIL ELECTED FOR MAINLAND CHINA  (18/5/09)

At ISCO’s AGM held at Interspill in Marseille last week Mr Guobin Li of Sunic-Ocean Marine Technical and Service Co. Ltd. was elected as ISCO Member of Council for China (mainland). In representing China on the IMO Council he joins Capt. Davy T.S. Lau who has represented China (Hong Kong) on the ISCO Council since January, 2006.

At the ISCO AGM, the Guest Speaker was Kurt A. Hansen, P.E., of the US Coast Guard Research and Development Center, who gave a presentation on the work of the R&D Center. ISCO President, David Usher, followed with a description of his involvement in a bird rescue and rehabilitation operation following on a recent diesel spill at Troy, Michigan. By invitation from the floor, Rosalie e’Silva of ISCO Associate Member, The Sea Alarm Foundation, gave Members and Guests an impromptu account of the Foundation’s work and its relationship with other wildlife rescue organisations.  Members who would like to have copies of any of these presentations should contact the Secretary of ISCO.

 

 

ISCO AGM 2009 UPDATE (4th May, 2009)

The Guest Speaker at the ISCO AGM will be Kurt A. Hansen P.E. from the US Coast Guard R&D Center.

ISCO is honoured to have such a distinguished guest speaker. It is hoped that as many members as possible will attend. Members are requested to advise others that interested non-members are also welcome to come to the meeting.

All Members of ISCO should have received the AGM Meeting Agenda, other Meeting Papers and Form of Proxy. Any Member who has not received these documents should contact the Secretary ASAP.   

LETTER FROM THE SECRETARY TO ALL MEMBERS OF ISCO (2009-1)

Dear Member of ISCO,

Time just seems to fly past and I just realised that it is less than 11 weeks before our next AGM in Marseille at Interspill. For your diary, the AGM will be on Wednesday 13th May at 1500 hrs. in the Salle Ratonneau, which is on the 3rd floor of the Parc Chanot venue. I shall send out the Agenda and other papers as soon as I can.

Since I last wrote to you at the end of 2008 ISCO has welcomed the following new members –

 UK Spill Association (the successor to BOSCA)
 Mauricio Padilha (Individual Member, Brazil)
 Seacor Environmental Services Middle East Ltd. (Abu Dhabi)
 Marco Formicola (Individual Member, Brazil)

At the 8th Meeting of the IMO OPRC-HNS Technical Group, ISCO agreed to assist IMO in collating members’ experiences in dealing with sub-sea oil recovery. The information is needed to help in the development of IMO Technical Guidelines on Sunken Oil Assessment and Removal Techniques.

ISCO also agreed to assist in an IMO initiative to gather information about experience gained and lessons learned in regard to response to Marine HNS Incident Response – both actual incidents and near-misses. Rear Admiral Stacey is collating information received from members and, as a reminder, I have attached his letter sent to you last November.

The response to appeals for information has not been good and I’m becoming very concerned.
The next meeting of the Technical Group is on July 6-10 and the deadline for submission of documents is in the second week of May.

ISCO worked hard to gain Consultative Status at IMO and in order to maintain this privilege we do need to make a positive contribution. I know you’re busy people and I know that some of may find it difficult to write reports – please don’t worry – I shall be happy to edit as necessary. I urge you to send an email. In addition to helping ISCO you will be doing yourself a favour – your contribution will figure in subsequent reports and publications. Governments and other entities will be informed on who has the relevant knowledge and experience.

Kind regards

John

3/03/09

 

ISCO APPOINTS MEMBERSHIP SECRETARY


ISCO is pleased to announce the appointment of Mary Anne Dalgleish as Membership Secretary. In this capacity Mary Anne will be helping ISCO build its international membership, also taking care of membership records and the invoicing of membership renewals.


Currently, ISCO has members in 33 countries. Membership of ISCO open to all professionals, companies and organisations involved in Spill Control and related disciplines.  ISCO’s mission is to raise worldwide preparedness and co-operation in response to oil and chemical spills, to promote technical development and professional competency, and to provide a focus for making the knowledge and experience of spill control professionals available to IMO, UNEP and other organizations. You are invited to apply for membership.

ISCO WEBSITE EVENTS PAGES SECRETARY APPOINTED


ISCO is pleased to announce the appointment of Mr Dan Silberman as Website Events Pages Secretary. Dan is already working to update the current listings of forthcoming conferences, exhibitions, and scheduled training courses for Oil and Chemical Spill Response, and for Homeland Defence / CBRN Incident Response. There is some catch-up work to get these pages fully up-to-date again but good progress is being made. Events organisers and providers of scheduled training courses can now send information for uploading on the site to Dan directly atdsilberman@marinepollutioncontrol.com

LETTER TO ALL THE MEMBERS OF ISCO (2008-6)

24th November, 2008

Dear Member of ISCO,

Please find below a letter to you from Rear Admiral Michael L. Stacey, CB.

Michael has kindly undertaken to take on the work of collating information for the project ISCO is undertaking for IMO. I would be very grateful for your co-operation and support in this matter. All submissions will be acknowledged in the report which will be circulated to the many governmental and other delegations who are represented in the OPRC-HNS Technical Group.

Kind regards

John

Dear Colleague
 
    You will be aware that last autumn ISCO was granted NGO status at the International Maritime Organisation (IMO). This is a privilege to which we in ISCO had long aspired and which we are extremely keen to retain. Our status is due for permanent review after the first two years, i.e. the autumn of 2009 and we are keen that by then we will have made sufficient impact on the organisation to ensure our  retention as an established NGO
 
     We have already identified several areas of influence that we can exploit, but I believe that there is probably more that we could do through our membership of the OPRC HNS Technical Group. There is already separate work being done on the rationalisation of relevant IMO manuals and guidelines, but I believe that through our membership we could provide a unique complementary and useful record of live experiences based on our personal participation in HNS spill clean-up operations.
 
     I am prepared to compile such a list with your help. Whilst imposing on you as little as possible could I ask you to send me details of any such involvement you, or your Company, might have been involved in over recent years. It would seem that the easiest way to do this would be for you to send a report to me by e-mail-no longer than a couple of pages and in accordance with a format, which I could build into a list of involvements and experiences. My-mail address is michael.stacey@onetel,.com
 
        Perhaps the following lay-out would help keep us all on the same line
 
     Name
 
     Company name
 
     Location of incident
 
     Brief description of incident
 
     Response to include, response levels, need for external support, Government involvement, use of sub-contractors, accreditation requirements etc.
 
     Cost of operations – compensation?
 
     Lasting environmental effects
 
     Lessons learnt – prevention of repetition,.
 
     Recommendations
 
        In anticipation I thank you for your cooperation
 
                                  With best wishes
 
                                   Michael L Stacey
                                   Member Executive Committee

Michael Stacey
Phone: 01252 713032
 
6 Headon Court
The Close
Tilford Road
Farnham GU9 8DR
UK

LETTER FROM THE SECRETARY TO ALL THE MEMBERS OF ISCO (2008-5)

Dear Member of ISCO,

Since I last wrote, the following have been welcomed as new members of ISCO –

* Hamdan Al-Ghamdi (General Manager, Environmental Protection, Saudi Arabia)
* Sesmeke Environmental Services (Corporate Member, Turkey)
* Captain Thejo Sadhu Prakash (Individual Member, India)
* SpillGo Ltd. (Corporate Member, Ireland)
* Evolution Sorbent Products (Corporate Member, USA)

As reported in the ISCO Newsletter, an ISCO delegation attended the 8th meeting of the IMO OPRC-HNS Technical Group in London last week. Outcomes include –

1. ISCO is contributing to a working group to gather information needed for the development of IMO Technical Guidelines on Sunken Oil Assessment and Removal Techniques. The workscope involves the recovery of not only negative buoyancy oil from the seabed but also the recovery of oil from sunken vessels. Will ISCO members who have been involved in such operations please drop me a line and I shall write to you separately on this matter.

2. ISCO has also agreed to assist in an IMO initiative to gather information about experience gained and lessons learned in regard to response to Marine HNS Incident Response – both actual incidents and near-misses. Will ISCO members who have been involved in such operations please drop me a line and I shall write to you separately on this matter.

3. In association with our sister organisation – The International Spill Accreditation Association (ISAA) – ISCO is to submit a paper to the next IMO OPRC-HNS TG meeting on the training and accreditation of inland responders to help answer the shortage of qualified people available to manage large numbers of volunteers and other inexperienced personnel in shoreline clean-up operations.

Looking particularly at (1) and (2) above, this is an opportunity for involved companies and consultants to raise their profiles at IMO as I’m sure that contributions will figure in subsequent reports and publications. Governments and other entities will be informed on who has the relevant knowledge and experience.

All of the above initiatives help to raise the profile of ISCO and reinforce the value of the organization as a point of contact for sourcing needed expertise and products in future emergencies.

On a related point, through the Newsletter and New Technology website pages, ISCO can help you to tell the world about new techniques and products. It is part of our remit to do this and you can benefit.

The ISCO website is based on a software programme called Joomla and I’m still very much on a learning curve. If any of you (or any member of your staff) is willing to help with uploading documents on the website, I would be extremely pleased to hear from you.

Finally, a few reminders …

* Some members have not yet registered on the website. You need to do this in order to access the Members’ Area.
* Corporate members can place free advertisements in the Supplies & Services Section of the Public Area of the ISCO website. Contact the Secretary for details.
* IMO is looking to ISCO for qualified individuals to support its Technical Co-operation Programme, helping third world countries to implement OPRC and other conventions. Day rate, travel and subsistence costs are payable to selected candidates. For more info, contact ISCO Secretary.
* We would like to include a few words about yourself (or your company if you’re a Corporate Member) under your name in the list of ISCO members. This is by way of an introduction to help members to get to know each other. If you wish, you can include your Email and/or other contact details.
* On the matter of outstanding subscriptions, I have been over the top with work but this is now a priority. If your subscription is not up to date, please correct this now. I really don’t want to have to terminate any memberships.

Kind regards

John

LETTER FROM THE SECRETARY TO ALL THE MEMBERS OF ISCO (2008-4)

Dear Member of ISCO,

It’s nearly four months since I last wrote to you and much has happened in the interim.

The AGM took place as planned on 7th May at the International Oil Spill Conference in Savannah, USA. In case you haven’t already read the minutes, you can find them athttp://www.spillcontrol.org and, after signing in, click on “ISCO”, then “meetings”.

ISCO President, David Usher, represented ISCO at the IMO Council meeting in London over 16-20 June. He was able to renew contacts with members of other international delegations and update them on new developments. David also represented ISCO and presented a paper on Submerged Oil Recovery at a recent Underwater Environment Conference in Sweden.

Since I last wrote, the following have been welcomed as new members of ISCO – The Sea Alarm Foundation (Associate Member); John Wardrop (Australia); Slickbar Indonesia; Jean Claude Sainlos, Sampling Planejamento (Brazil) and Ro-Clean Desmi.

International representation on the ISCO Executive Committee has been significantly improved with the election of Jean Claude Sainlos (France) at the AGM and the co-option of Paul Pisani (Malta) and Kerem Kemerli (Turkey) following on nomination proposals received from members. Looking forwards, it is hoped to increase international representation on the Committee with elected representatives from other regions such as Australia, Far East, Africa, South America, Middle East and Scandinavia/Northern Europe.

A Sub-Committee has been formed to revise and update the ISCO Constitution. The revised constitution will be circulated to members for approval at least one month before the next AGM which will be held at Interspill (Marseille, France) in May, 2009.

A small Sub-Committee has also been formed to manage ISCO’s relationship with IMO. The members are Jean-Claude Sainlos, John Noble (Individual member of ISCO and advisor to the International Salvage Union (ISU) and ISCO Secretary, John McMurtrie. As the former head of IMO’s Marine Environment Division, Jean-Claude has first hand knowledge of IMO’s modus operandi. John Noble, as the former CEO of the Salvage Association, has a sound understanding of marine pollution issues. He will be in London regularly and will be well placed to maintain a dialogue with ISCO’s contacts in IMO.

Looking forwards, ISCO will be providing official observers at the full-scale international response exercise between Canada and the USA in September, 2008 and an ISCO delegation will be participating in the IMO MEPC OPRC-HNS Technical Group Meetings in London from September 29 – October 3.

Our sister organization, the International Spill Accreditation Association is continuing to develop the All-Ireland Spill Response Organization Accreditation Scheme and your Secretary has attended further meetings of the Steering Group in Dublin and Belfast. The situation is encouraging with a number of new applications received from contractors wishing to gain accreditation. The current priority is the planning of a seminar and training event to take place in late September.
 
Most recently, a meeting was held last week with members of the UK Spill board to discuss co-operation over the setting up of an international correspondence group to develop accreditation criteria for spill response organizations (OSROs) involved in chemical and HNS response – more news on this later.

In response to requests from response contractors in the Mediterranean area wishing to gain ISAA International Accredited Status, discussions are ongoing with a view to setting up a Mediterranean Region Accreditation Scheme. ISAA is pleased to advise that Darko Domovic, the former Head of Operations at REMPEC (Regional Marine Pollution Emergency Centre for the Mediterranean) will have a key role in this new development.

Finally, a few reminders and announcements –

* ISCO is looking for volunteers willing to give a few hours of their time to assist in managing the ISCO website. If you would like to help, please drop me an Email atjohn.mcmurtrie@spillcontrol.org
* Patricia Charlebois of IMO writes “I strongly encourage delegations who have been involved in oil and/or HNS pollution incidents to submit any information on these, as these are valuable means of exchanging experiences and lessons learned”. ISCO Members who feel they may be able to make a contribution should contact the Secretary as soon as possible.
* Some members have not yet registered on the website. You need to do this in order to access the Members’ Area.
* Interspill Conference (Marseille, France, May 2009) has issued a call for papers. Deadline is 15th September. http://www.interspill.com
* Corporate members can place free advertisements in the Supplies & Services Section of the Public Area of the ISCO website. Contact the Secretary for details.
* IMO is looking to ISCO for qualified individuals to support its Technical Co-operation Programme, helping third world countries to implement OPRC and other conventions. Day rate, travel and subsistence costs are payable to selected candidates. For more info, contact ISCO Secretary.
* We would like to include a few words about yourself (or your company if you’re a Corporate Member) under your name in the list of ISCO members. This is by way of an introduction to help members to get to know each other. If you wish, you can include your Email and/or other contact details.
* Finally, I’m sorry to have to say that a (thankfully) very small number of members have neglected to keep their subscriptions up-to-date. At the last AGM it was decided that Members who fail to pay their subscriptions will receive a reminder and if outstanding membership dues are not paid within 30 days, membership will be terminated.

That’s all for now.

Kind regards,

John

LETTER FROM THE SECRETARY TO ALL THE MEMBERS OF ISCO (2008-3)

Dear Member of ISCO,

I have started to prepare the Agenda and Papers for our 2008 AGM which will take place at IOSC in Savannah, Georgia, USA. The conference runs from 4-8 May, 2008 and if you need more information the website is at http://www.iosc.org/

The day and time for the meeting hasn’t yet been fixed. I shall be in touch again to let you know as soon as I can. I hope to see as many of you as possible at the AGM.

Quite a lot has happened since I last wrote to you.

David Usher (President), Rear Admiral Stacey (Member of Executive Committee) and I had a very useful and positive meeting with Stefan Micallef (Deputy Director, IMO Marine Environment Division, IMO), Patricia Charlebois (Head, Pollution Response Section) and Malamine Thiam (Head, Technical Co-operation Co-ordination and Major Projects) in London on 11th February. Discussions focused on a list of points (attached). The minutes of the meeting are still under review by IMO but will be published ASAP in the Members Only part of the ISCO website.

ISCO was well represented at the OPRC-HNS Technical Group meetings held over 25-28 March at Southampton. The ISCO delegation included David Usher, Michael Stacey, Dr Merv Fingas (Member of Council for Canada), Kevin Miller (Member of Council for UK) and myself.

David Usher, Michael Stacey and Dr Douglas Cormack (Honorary Member) formed the ISCO delegation to the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) meeting over March 31 – April 4.

Attendance at both of these events was very positive for ISCO, raising our profile and giving the ISCO delegates an opportunity to network with attendees from many countries. At the OPRC-HNS meeting, Dr Fingas and Kevin Miller both participated in working groups, making a positive contribution to the creation of new IMO manuals for the use by international response community.

Disappointingly, only three ISCO members have so far expressed interest in the invitation to become involved in the IMO Integrated Technical Co-operation Programme (for details see my letter 2008-2 (attached). I hope more of you will now come forward.

As you’re already aware, ISCO is managing the International Spill Accreditation Association (ISAA). Progress in the setting up of a new management committee with participation of international stakeholders is proving to be slow but we hope that, by demonstrating the value of the work being done by ISAA in raising response standards, we will merit more support.

In Ireland, there is considerable enthusiasm for the further development of the ISAA All-Ireland OSRO Accreditation Scheme. The Steering Group is working hard on a range of measures to raise response standards. Aspects being addressed include upgrading of training and response personnel competency; the development and adoption of clean-up standards; review of insurance cover levels; improving spill response administration and provision of information to clients; upgrading of response call-out and stand-by arrangements; and plans for upgrading the ISAA website, including a new database of services provided by members, the creation of a members’ forum and improved access to technical support for response capacity building.

ISAA is working to establish similar Accreditation Schemes in other countries and, if you think that this would be of benefit in your country, please get in touch with me.

ISCO is pleased to welcome Dr Douglas Cormack as an Honorary Member. As the former Chief Scientist at the British Government’s Marine Pollution Control Unit and head of the UK’s first government agency, the Warren Spring Laboratory, Douglas is a well known and highly respected figure in the spill response community. He is the Chairman and a founder member of the International Spill Accreditation Association.


ISCO is also pleased to welcome the following new Corporate Members – Briggs Marine Environmental Services Ltd. (based in Baku, Azerbaijan); Lamor Corporation Ab and Clean Globe International (both with HQ in Porvoo, Finland), and Slickbar Products Corporation (based in Seymour, Connecticut, U.S.A).

Work is ongoing to start populating the Technical and Reference Pages of the ISCO website. The intention is to upload practical information that will help members to build and improve spill response knowledge. It’s your website and I hope you will contribute useful information based on your own experience.

I’m in process of extending the ISCO Members Mailing List to include additional contacts within companies that hold corporate membership of ISCO. Please let me have names and Email addresses of staff members who would like to receive my occasional letters and/or be added to the Newsletter mailing list. In the meantime, please circulate this letter to any members of your staff that you think likely to be interested.

Finally, a reminder – If you haven’t already registered on the ISCO website at http://www.spillcontrol.org Please do so now. Until you’ve done this your access to the Members’ Area can’t be switched on.

Kind regards

John McMurtrie, Secretary.

 

LETTER FROM THE SECRETARY TO ALL THE MEMBERS OF ISCO (2008-2)

Dear Member of ISCO,

There are two points that I omitted to mention in my earlier letter.

(1) As part of our commitment to IMO, ISCO has been asked to put forward names of qualified individuals who could be called upon to assist in IMO’s Integrated Technical Co-operation Programme. This has to do with the provision of technical support for governments in implementing international conventions such as, for example, OPRC and OPRC-HNS and can involve help with national contingency plan development, inputs to seminars and workshops, training (delivery of IMO model courses), etc. Other tasks can include spill investigation, technical support for governments during spill events and support for negotiation of regional co-operation arrangements between governments. Selected individuals may be employed by IMO as consultants undertaking short-term projects in various countries. Interested Members should send me a copy of their CVs / Qualifications and Experience Statements. Only the most suitable individuals will be short listed and asked to complete IMO Personal History forms. There are no guarantees that work will ensue but the list of qualified individuals will be used by IMO for selecting personnel to undertake project work. If engaged, a day rate is payable plus travel and subsistence allowance.

(2) The names of all ISCO Members (Corporate and Individual) are listed on the ISCO website within the part of the site that can only be accessed by Members. Listings of Members of the Executive Committee and Council are accompanied by short profiles.  A suggestion has been made that Members (Corporate and Individual) would appreciate being able to learn about each other – where they are based, what they do and other information of interest. If you would like to have a summary profile (around 100-150 words) about yourself or your company (if you are a Corporate Member) included under your listing, please send me suitable text for uploading.

Kind regards

John McMurtrie
Secretary

LETTER FROM THE SECRETARY TO ALL THE MEMBERS OF ISCO (2008-1)

Dear Member,

I hope you are continuing to find the ISCO Newsletter useful and informative. I’m grateful to all of you that have sent in contributions and will continue to publish them whenever I can.

You will have read in the Newsletter that ISCO now has Consultative Status at IMO and on 11th February Members of your Executive Committee met with IMO in London. It was an extremely positive meeting during which IMO welcomed the contribution that ISCO will make to MEPC, the OPRC-HNS Technical Group and the Integrated Technical Co-operation Programme. You can find summary reports in the Members’ Area of the ISCO website at ISCO>Meetings. ISCO will be participating in the forthcoming meetings of the IMO Marine Environment Protection Committee and the OPRC-HNS Technical Group. More on this later …

The decision taken at the 2008 AGM to mount a rescue operation for the International Spill Accreditation Association (ISAA) has now been implemented with the transfer of management responsibility formalised on 11th February. Prior to this, on January 20th, your Secretary met with the Ireland Accreditation Steering Group in Dublin and, following on this meeting, the Group confirmed its support of ISCO taking over responsibility for managing the International Spill (Ireland) Accreditation Scheme. With regret, the resignation of ISAA Director, John Dawes, has been accepted – As he is now a full time manager for Briggs Environmental Services Ltd., conflict of interest prohibited his continuing as a member of the ISAA board. However, I’m pleased to advise that Dr Douglas Cormack will continue as the Chairman of ISAA and has now been granted Honorary Membership of ISCO. Douglas is highly respected in the spill control community and has a wealth of experience. We all look forward to the valuable contribution he will undoubtedly make to ISCO.

ISCO is pleased to announce the recent appointment of three new Members of ISCO Council – Dr Merv Fingas (CANADA), Mr Kevin Miller (UK) and Mr Paul Pisani (MALTA). Please take a few minutes to look at the profiles of Dr Fingas, Kevin Miller and Paul Pisani on the website at ISCO>Members. You will see that all are eminently well qualified individuals and we look forward to working with them.

We’re also pleased to welcome three new Members – Individual Member, John Noble, who was, until recently, Deputy Chairman of the Salvage Association and is now running his own company, Noble Marine. Corporate Member, SL Ross Environmental Research – the company responsible for collating and publishing the World Catalog of Oil Spill Response Products. Associate Member, The Scottish Environmental Technology Network – an organisation led by the Contaminated Land Assessment and Remediation Research Centre at the University of Edinburgh.

If you haven’t already registered on the ISCO website at http://www.spillcontrol.org
Please do so now. Until you’ve done this your access to the Members’ Area can’t be switched on.

Please take a few minutes to review the ISCO website. I’m looking for ideas on improving the website and for contributions to help populate the Technical/ Reference and other pages. Inputs could, for example, include information about response techniques that would help ISCO Members to build their knowledge and response capacity.

I’ve noticed that quite a few of our Corporate Members have not yet taken advantage of the free display advertising facility in the website Supplies & Services section. If you need help to make up your advertisement, our IT support can do the needful for a very modest fee.

Finally, please be mindful that the continuation of ISCO’s work depends on revenue from Membership Fees. It really is vitally important for ISCO to recruit new corporate and individual members and you can help by encouraging people in your country to join.

With kind regards

John McMurtrie
Secretary

 

 

ISCO AWARDED CONSULTATIVE STATUS AT IMO

For the very first time, individual responders, spill response organisations, manufacturers and others responsible for the world’s capacity to respond to oil and chemical spills, will have a voice at the International Maritime Organisation. The recognition of ISCO means that, at long last, the professionals in the front line of spill combat operations will join with other organizations at IMO representing oil, shipping and environmental interests. The inclusion of those who provide the essential infrastructure for spill response fills a longstanding gap and will ensure a much better balance, allowing direct dialogue between IMO and the spill response community. The decision was taken at the end of November when the Assembly of the IMO endorsed the decision of the IMO Council and confirmed this by a letter received from IMO on 14th December, 2007. ISCO representatives are planning to meet with IMO early in the New Year for discussions with IMO on a number of initiatives.

 

 

 

EGYPTIAN CONFERENCE

Address given by ISCO Secretary John McMurtrie on 3rd September 2007 at the Conference at Port Said, Egypt, on the occasion of the Egyptian National Oil Spill Response Exercise “Ra Atum VI”.


Welcome.  On behalf of the International Spill Control Organisation – ISCO, for short – I’d like to congratulate everyone involved in organising this event. It’s most timely and I’m particularly pleased to see the co-operation that is taking place between Egypt’s national response organisation and the Suez Canal Authority.

The emphasis on regional and international participation in the programme is very positive. I hope that these events will herald further development of this co-operation. Please be assured that your efforts have the support of ISCO. 

The theme of this event is “Co-operation in Practice” – a subject that is central to the aims of the International Spill Control Organization. 
   
For those of you who are unfamiliar with ISCO, let me give you a very brief potted history. The International Spill Control Organisation was incorporated in London in 1984 as a non-profit-making organisation, dedicated to improving worldwide co-operation and preparedness for response to oil and chemical spills. 
    
The founding members of ISCO were the Spill Control Association of America (SCAA), the British Oil Spill Control Association (BOSCA), the Spill Control Association of France (SYCOPOL) and the Swedish Spill Control Association (SWEMARPOL). 

The International Maritime Organisation (IMO), United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), European Community (EC) and other organisations involved with legislation and other measures to improve the world’s capability to respond to oil and chemical spills have the benefit of inputs from national governments, petroleum industry organisations and environmental groups. 

But there is also a vast resource of knowledge and experience amongst oil spill professionals – dedicated men and women in spill control manufacturing, response companies, co-ops, consultancies, universities, research and training. Global implementation of counter pollution measures depend to a high degree on these professionals and their organisations but, without focus, they have no voice. IMO and other relevant world organisations cannot communicate directly with the spill control industry as a whole and cannot easily access the expertise therein. ISCO aims to correct this situation.

ISCO was re-launched at the International Oil Spill Conference at Miami in 2005 and at this time the constitution was changed to allow a broader membership. ISCO is now truly international with members in 24 countries.  

The organization is run by a Secretariat that is responsible to an elected Executive Committee assisted by the ISCO Council. Members of ISCO Council are the National Representatives of ISCO in their own countries. The Council is a non-executive body that is consulted by, and gives advice to, the Executive Committee. Members of Council provide a focus for ISCO Members in their own countries and a point of contact with their national governments and other national organisations. Currently there are 19 Members of Council, representing 19 countries. I’m happy to say that Member of ISCO Council for Egypt is Engr. Ashraf Sabet. 

Following on an extended consultation ISCO is currently pursuing several new initiatives.  
  
A new upgraded ISCO website has just been launched. The existing public service of information on conferences, exhibitions, scheduled training courses, etc. is being retained and a new classified section gives members the opportunity to promote their equipment or services with free advertisements which would otherwise cost 500 pounds sterling or more. A whole range of new features is being developed, including a members’ area currently under construction. There will be a focus on promoting co-operation and in helping members to grow response capability.
 

ISCO is planning to organise training and workshops in different countries where there is interest in implementing OPRC and the OPRC-HNS Protocol. Final approval of new IMO Model HNS training courses is expected soon and ISCO is working with other parties to deliver these courses. The accompanying workshops will involve local organisations, both public and private, intended to help attendees to build capacity to meet the new challenges. ISCO Members of Council will soon receive detailed proposals and will be asked to assess national interest in advancing these plans. 

Through its new web site ISCO will publish technical papers, news of new techniques, equipment and materials, other developments and progress reports, all designed to assist members to meet the challenges arising from OPRC and OPRC-HNS implementation. 

ISCO will maintain databases and other information sourcing support facilities with links to other organisations for networking and information exchange. 

ISCO will actively support, involve its members, and contribute to national consultative processes regarding OPRC/OPRC-HNS implementation.  

ISCO will keep its members informed on progress being made in different countries and alert members to emerging opportunities to contribute to infrastructure development for OPRC/OPRC-HNS implementation. 

It’s just over a year since the Lebanon oil spill. As an example of “Co-operation in Practice” you may be interested to know that ISCO made a rapid initial assessment and offered technical support to IMO and REMPEC. Within days of the spill a forecast of potential challenges that could arise was communicated. The need to recover negative buoyancy oil from the seabed was foreseen before the problem arose and ISCO members were ready to provide specialised knowledge and experience. One ISCO member, Marine Pollution Control, accelerated successful proving trials on a new system for recovering sub-sea oil deposits to a surface vessel. 

Co-operation is all about helping each other and ISCO continues to assist its members in overcoming technical problems – a more recent problem involved the removal of weathered oil deposits from a rocky shoreline in a sensitive location in the Faroe Islands. The solution, which worked very well indeed, was based on another member’s experience in resolving similar problems in the UK and Saudi Arabia.

How can you successfully recover oil in currents of up to 3.5 – 4 knots? How can you quickly and easily deploy a diversion or recovery boom from one bank of a fast-flowing river without any need for boats or anchors? How can you guarantee continuous 100% containment of oil in a fast flowing watercourse without impeding the water flow?  How can you automatically detect an oil spill using a fixed detector in a marine situation with a tidal range of up to 5m? 

ISCO members will be able to find answers to these and many other problems in the technical pages of the new ISCO website. If up against a problem and no immediate solution is at hand, members will have rapid access to the knowledge and experience of the international community of spill control professionals. 

Another recent ISCO development involves ongoing discussions with the International Spill Accreditation Association (ISAA), an associate member of ISCO. ISAA’s objective is to raise standards of performance within the spill response industry and thus to give customers confidence that they will receive a high standard of professional and cost-effective performance from those contractors who have gone to the trouble and expense of seeking and achieving accreditation.

This is not just another quality assurance body but is a scheme that sets capability standards and, through scheme administration and specialist knowledge, helps contractors to attain these standards. 

ISAA wishes to develop a closer co-operative working relationship with ISCO and this is seen as a route for ISCO to realise its objective of raising industry standards. 

ISCO strongly supports the formation of regional organisations like OSRAM. On a regional basis, OSRAM complements the other regional organizations – REMPEC and the Mediterranean Oil Industry Group (MOIG). 

It’s absolutely right that the industry should have a voice and it’s only through a co-operative organisation like OSRAM that the professionals responsible for cleaning up spills can have a real dialogue with regional organisations representing governments and oil industry. In many ways OSRAM’s regional objectives mirror those that ISCO is pursuing on a worldwide basis.  

OSRAM’s role in developing regional co-operation is important, especially in larger spill situations where the resources of individual companies may not be adequate. Through co-operation a much larger resource is created and, by working together, it’s possible to raise the profile of the industry and develop everyone’s role in regional counter-pollution provision. Those companies that have joined OSRAM are demonstrating a mature attitude, recognising that there are times to compete with one another and other times when it is better to work together for mutual benefit.

Finally, my sincere congratulations on a very successful exercise and thank you for the opportunity to speak.  I hope very much that some of you who share our values will want to join ISCO and I will be happy to answer your questions.