International Bird Rescue (IBR), a highly respected US oiled wildlife response organisation, is partnering with the Port of Long Beach to highlight the need to care for and protect marine wildlife and coastal habitat in southern California. The partnership is part of the Port of Long Beach Green Port Policy efforts to improve and restore local wetlands such as the Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve.
A team of international researchers led by the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), has conducted a real-time study of the breakdown of oil during the first 24 hours after a spill. The results were then compared to a model that the team had developed to predict the ways in which the oil changes and how various components enter the water column and atmosphere.
Maritime New Zealand, the agency tasked with oversight of oil spill preparedness and response in that country, has issued a draft of the New Zealand Marine Oil Spill Response Strategy 2014 for comment. The response strategy document is reviewed regularly and updated as needed. The experience gained during the MV Rena grounding in 2011has helped to shape the updated document.
The long-term effects of oil spills on wildlife and their habitats are just beginning to be understood. Reduction of these impacts, which for wildlife can range from reproductive failure to developmental abnormalities, may be assisted by the natural breakdown of oils by organisms found in the marine environment. Some recent studies have looked at biodegradation, giving a slightly clearer picture of what these organisms can and can’t do.
Five years after the inaugural World Seabird Conference launched the World Seabird Union (WSU), Capetown will host the WSU’s second conference. From 26-30 October 2015, experts from around the world will gather to share information on seabird research and conservation.
US states focus on oil pipeline and rail transport safety; Coast Guard finalizes tanker rules for Prince William Sound
Oil spill prevention and response are in the forefront in the US as two states, New Hampshire and Minnesota, have passed laws increasing industry responsibility for pipeline and railroad maintenance and emergency response, and California has added fees for rail and pipeline oil shipments similar to those they impose on marine oil carriers. In addition, the US Coast Guard has finalised rules for transport of oil in Prince William Sound where the Exxon Valdez oil spill occurred 25 years ago.
Oiledwildife.eu is saddened to report that Jay Holcomb, Executive Director of International Bird Rescue for many years, died on June 10, 2014.
A two-day Oiled Wildlife Response Planning course, to be held 9-10 October in Ostend, Belgium, will introduce industry response personnel and other stakeholders responsible for environmental resources to the complexities of an oiled wildlife response.
The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) has issued its final update on the devastating seabird wreck caused by severe winter storms, with totals of confirmed affected birds now reaching more than 33,000.
The Hellenic Marine Environment Protection Association (HELMEPA)’s Environmental Awareness Campaign held its final series of events on the island of Euboea in May. The campaign, supported by the Lloyd’s Register Foundation, is geared toward educating children on the issue of marine pollution and encouraging their engagement in environmental conservation and protection activities.