Dr Karen Purnell
Paper presented at the Petroleum Association of Japan (PAJ) Oil Spill Symposium 2010, Tokyo, Japan, 3-4 March 2010
Against a background of reducing oil spills from tankers, maintaining oil spill preparedness and response is a challenge. Historically, effort expended on preparedness and training has tended to fluctuate in response to actual incidents, with a flurry of activity typically taking place after an incident. A more sustainable level of preparedness is more likely to be maintained by realistically assessing the risks and then focusing on issues where problems have typically occurred. This is especially the case when one realises that the oil spills that are occurring most often around the world arise from incidents involving non-tankers and involve persistent fuel oils. This paper highlights the evolution of expectations and realities in preparedness and response over time.