Spill Notification Point
Ports and Marine Department
Private Mail Bag 046, Port Vila Efate Island
Tel: +678 22339
Fax: +678 22475
Competent National Authority
Contact details are as for the Spill Notification Point.
Operational responsibility during an oil spill incident lies with the Ports and Marine Department of the Ministry of Transport, Communications and Public Works. The Ports and Marine Department has jurisdiction over the two commercial harbours in Vanuatu: Port Vila on Efate and Luganville on Espiritu Santo.
The Vanuatu government has made provision for the creation of an Environmental Protection, Conservation and Pollution Unit within the Ministry of Lands, Energy and Rural Water Supply. The intention is for this Unit to assume responsibilities both for prevention and control of oil spills.
Vanuatu is a member of the South Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) and party to the SPREP Protocol Concerning Cooperation in Combating Pollution Emergencies in the South Pacific, which provides the legal framework through which marine spill contingency planning is addressed in the region. SPREP has prepared PACPOL, the Pacific Ocean Pollution Prevention Programme, which has drafted the Pacific Islands Regional Marine Spill Contingency Plan (PACPLAN). This was endorsed by Members in September 2000 as the regional framework through which the SPREP Pollution Emergencies Protocol would be operationalised. PACPLAN only applies to spills where regional cooperation and/or supraregional assistance are required. It does not cover Tier One and Tier Two spills. At the national level, PACPOL has provided Vanuatu with assistance in formulating its national plan, consistent with PACPLAN and international best practice.
The Ports and Marine Department has 2 dispersant spray arms but no other resources for dealing with spills. The para-military Mobile Force could supply transport, patrol craft and up to 300 men for any shoreline cleanup.
In order to assist each Pacific Island country and territory to establish the optimum equipment inventory for its situation, PACPOL is carrying out a review of marine spill combat needs in 2003 with funding from the International Maritime Organization and Canada. Once the review is completed, the project will seek to secure sources of support to procure the necessary equipment, plus provide training in its use and long-term maintenance.
The most significant stockpiles of marine spill response equipment held within the region are: American Samoa (US Coast Guard and oil industry/contractor); Guam (USCG and oil industry/contractor) and New Caledonia (French Navy). Access to this equipment is available via the Request for Assistance procedures under PACPOL.
There are two trailers, jointly owned by local oil companies, containing basic oil spill control equipment.
Previous Spill Experience
There have been no major spills in Vanuatu waters
Prevention & Safety
|OPRC '90||OPRC HNS|
* not yet in force
Regional & Bilateral Agreements
Vanuatu is not a party to any agreements.
Date of issue: October 2008