The Norwegian Coastal Administration, the Norwegian Environment Agency and the Norwegian Centre for Oil Spill Preparedness and Marine Environment have joined forces to establish a collaboration forum for oil spill preparedness R&D. In Norwegian: Statlig samarbeidsforum for FoU oljevern.

The purpose of the forum is to make Norwegian oil spill preparedness more environmentally friendly and efficient by identifying and highlighting knowledge and research requirements.

- We will be a driving force to ensure that coordinated research and development takes place in a cost-efficient manner and that it is relevant to operational preparedness, says Gaute Wahl from the Norwegian Centre for Oil Spill Preparedness and Marine Environment.

The mission of the collaboration forum is:

  • To act as a venue for identifying and sharing knowledge and research requirements within Norwegian oil spill preparedness
  • To seek agreement between agencies on the subject areas and knowledge and research requirements that should be prioritised
  • To act as a driving force for necessary research and development work
  • To facilitate the exchange of knowledge and experience regarding R&D through dialogue with relevant communities and stakeholders
  • To highlight the topics and knowledge/development requirements prioritised by the agencies through suitable venues such as the forum on future oil spill preparedness (Forum for framtidas oljevern) and the emergency response forum (Beredskapsforum).

Capacity and efficiency of mechanical oil spill preparedness

To ensure adequate preparedness, the collaboration forum feels it necessary to highlight the current capacity and efficiency of mechanical oil spill preparedness. In 2020, the collaboration forum has therefore prioritised this as an important subject area, with a specific focus on challenges in the high north.

Several issues relevant to the capacity and efficiency of oil spill preparedness support this prioritisation, such as studies on new bunker oils, precise modelling to improve response in coastal areas and testing regimes for equipment and systems.

The collaboration forum, Statlig samarbeidsforum for FoU oljevern, believes it is important to produce well documented information concerning the realistic capacities and efficiencies of oil spill preparedness systems. The agencies’ assessments indicate that adequate information is not currently available.

A key area for the collaboration forum will be the forum on future oil spill preparedness (Forum for framtidas oljevern) which took place for the first time in 2019. The forum returns on 15 and 16 September 2020.