Oil spills are a major environmental threat that can damage natural resources, impact delicate aquatic habitats and ecosystems, as well as disrupt the economy. A prompt and effective oil spill response is paramount to minimise damage and protect natural resources.
Environmental impact of oil spills
Federal governments and environmental regulations authorities globally impose strict regulations and requirements for monitoring and preventing oil spills due to their devasting impact.
The oil spill regulations primarily cover two areas – oil spill response and clean-up, and oil spill prevention/preparedness. Oil spill response covers the actions and measures taken to minimise the damage caused by an active oil spill. Federal authorities carefully monitor the response of the spiller as well as provide guidance on the clean-up activities.
Oil spill prevention/preparedness covers the measures implemented by companies such as the maintenance of contingency plans, availability of equipment for handling spills, personnel training, and conducting internal examinations to test preparedness.
Violations of these requirements and rules can lead to multimillion-dollar financial penalties for companies.
Finding suppliers of oil spill response equipment and services
Offshore Technology has listed leading providers of oil spill response services and oil spill recovery equipment such as oil-in-water analysers and monitors, waste compactors, and oil absorption blankets, based on its intel, insights, and decades-long experience in the sector.
The list includes providers of magnetic patches, oil spill recovery equipment testing and training, environmental protection and monitoring solutions, waste handling services, and hydrocarbon remediation services.
The information contained within the download document is designed for pollution control specialists, petrochemical environmental engineers, environmental coordinators and officers, oil spill response technicians and oil and gas inspectors.
The download contains detailed information on the suppliers and their product lines, alongside contact details to aid your purchasing decision.
Oil spill response – minimising the impact of spills
The damage from oil spills can be minimised by timely action and using the appropriate oil recovery equipment and containment measures. Oil spill recovery methods can be broadly classified into mechanical, chemical/biological and physical methods.
- Mechanical containment or recovery methods include the use of oil spill recovery and containment equipment such as absorbent materials, booms, barriers, and skimmers.
- Chemical and biological methods are used in combination with mechanical methods for oil spill response measures. They include the use of dispersing agents and gelling agents to prevent the oil from reaching shorelines and sensitive habitats.
- Physical methods comprise the use of natural processes such as evaporation, oxidation, and biodegradation, although these methods are slow and do not provide sufficient oil spill recovery. Other methods such as pressure washing, raking, and bulldozing are used along with the natural processes to expedite the oil spill recovery process.
Oil recovery equipment
The oil spill response landscape has improved drastically with the development of a wide range of oil recovery equipment. Some of the commonly used oil spill recovery equipment and solutions include:
- Oil containment booms and curtains
- Oil skimmers
- Rigid sweeping arms and sweep systems
- Oil spill alarms
- Oil absorption blankets and boards
- Anti-pollution agents, and
- Bio-organic catalysts