Documents & Guides

Explore a variety of topics about marine spills, response and compensation matters in the pages below.

Each topic and area of interest provides access to more detailed documentation that is freely downloadable.

This includes our 18 Technical Information Papers which are fully illustrated with photos and diagrams and are available in several languages. 

Compensation for Ship-source Marine Oil Spills

What legal arrangements and sources of compensation are available for a spill from a ship?


What planning and waste management systems need to be put in place to reduce the volume of oily waste for treatment or disposal?

Environmental Effects

How does oil impact seabirds, plankton, sea mammals and the shoreline?  


What are the specific chemical response strategies for responding to a Hazardous and Noxious Substance spill, and what are the potential effects on human and marine life? 

Contingency & Response Planning

What information is needed for an effective oil spill contingency plan? How can aerial observation and protective strategies assist with response operations? 

Economic Effects

Which industries might suffer temporary economic losses and loss of market confidence?

Fate of Oil Spills

What happens to oil in the marine environment over time when spilled at sea? How do different factors such as volume and physical and chemical properties affect the fate of oil spills? 

Response Techniques

What techniques are available for cleaning up oil at sea and on the shoreline?

Explore the Resources

Search filters
Marine HNS Response Manual

Marine HNS Response Manual

The Project to create the Marine HNS Response Manual was implemented through an inter-regional effort, including the participation of the Western Mediterranean Region Marine Oil and HNS Pollution Cooperation (West MOPoCo), the Regional Marine Pollution Emergency Response Centre for the Mediterranean Sea (REMPEC), the Bonn Agreement for the Greater North Sea and its approaches and the Helsinki Commission (HELCOM) for the Baltic Sea. The project benefits from the technical support and expertise of expert partner institutions such as Cedre, ISPRA and ITOPF.

Categories: HNS, Papers

Read more

Are HNS spills more dangerous than oil spills? (2009)

Are HNS spills more dangerous than oil spills? (2009)

While the hazards and consequences of oil spills are well known, little information exists for chemical spills. Words such as ‘carcinogenic’, ‘mutagenic’, and ‘neurotoxic’, which appear on shipping documents, are readily misinterpreted and extrapolated to worst-case scenarios causing public apprehension and mistrust. This paper attempts to answer the question ‘Are HNS Spills More Dangerous Than Oil Spills?

Categories: HNS, Papers

Read more

TIP 17: Response to marine chemical incidents

TIP 17: Response to marine chemical incidents

This paper provides an introduction to the issues involved in responding to chemical spills and addresses the range of hazards present, the behaviour of chemicals when spilt at sea and briefly reviews available response options.

Categories: HNS, Technical Information Paper (TIPS)

Read more