In recent years, NOFO has dedicated efforts to establish a specialized team on permanent standby, comprising highly qualified personnel capable of swift mobilization. The shoreline and coastal task forces serve as an extension and reinforcement of this enduring preparedness.
Annual oil spill response drills play a crucial role in our preparedness efforts. Members of NOFO's specialist team actively participate in these drills, serving as advisory staff, spill site leaders, and team leaders. This engagement allows for the practice of routines, thereby enhancing competence in oil spill preparedness.
NOFO's response teams:
Coastal task force (IGK)
Vessels for NOFO’s coastal oil spill preparedness
NOFO enhances its coastal oil spill preparedness through agreements with shipowners in the coastal fishing fleet and service vessels.
In collaboration with approved companies such as Polarkonsult and Nordnorsk Skipskonsult, the vessels undergo modifications and conversions to comply with regulations governing the use of vessels in oil spill response operations.
Numerous crews have received oil spill response training in Nordkapp, Sandnessjøen, and Kristiansund as part of NOFO's initiative to provide training and conduct vessel drills. This initiative has significantly increased the knowledge and expertise of the crews along the coastline in the collection and uptake of oil emulsion.
Video: oil spill preparedness close to the coastline
Emergency shoreline task force (IGSA)
IGSA is a specialized response team designed to address acute oil spills along the shoreline resulting from operations on the Norwegian continental shelf.
Comprising members recruited from Finnmark, IGSA was initially established as part of the preparedness framework for the Goliat field. However, its capabilities extend to potential mobilization for service in other coastal areas of Norway.
IGSA's primary objective is to minimize the damage caused by potential oil approaching the coast. In emergency situations, the task force deploys high-speed boats and appropriate equipment for swift and effective oil collection along the shoreline.
Established in December 2011, the task force has been in operational preparedness service since late summer 2012. Its members undergo specialized training and actively participate in drills, integrated into NOFO's permanent preparedness setup.
The "task force" concept was developed through collaboration between Eni Norge (now Vår Energi) and Equinor in partnership with NOFO.
It's important to note that, to date, no oil spill from offshore activities on the Norwegian continental shelf has ever reached the land.
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VIDEO: how oil spills are dealt with on the shoreline
NOFO’s specialist team
The specialist team is NOFO’s response team with the competency and capacity to undertake operational aspects of oil spill response efforts in the coastal zone and on the shoreline.
NOFO´s specialist team consists of approximately 60 persons The goal is to be able to mobilize at least 10 persons at any point along the Norwegian coast within 24 hours.
The specialist team is assigned a number of oil prevention action tasks in the coastal zone and beach zone and are to be a supplement to the Intermunicipal Committee against Acute Pollution (IUA).
The team is to be a partner, supporter, facilitator, and start-up help for IUA, in addition to working as an advisor for NOFO´s operational management and IUA effort, damage site, and team management.
The specialist team will also be able to be a national resource that can provide aid in the event of public and municipal/inter-municipal actions in accordance with the duty of assistance, ref. Poulltion Act.
Members are obliged to participate in the specialist team for up to ten days in the event of oil spill operations in the coastal and beach zones.
Competence, training, drills
The specialist team shall have basic competence within:
- Oil Spill Response Equipment
Members of the specialist team who belong to the IUA and are involved in the operation remain in that role. The specialist team will be NOFO’s key resource in further developing competence as well as leadership and planning capacity among the IUA's.
Unique local expertise
Under the coordination of NOFO and the operating companies on the Norwegian continental shelf, training sessions and drills involving local fishing vessels, as well as rescue vessels, have been conducted as part of the preparedness initiative.
This approach is driven by the distinctive expertise of local mariners and their profound knowledge of their immediate surroundings. Fishermen possess extensive insights into seabed conditions, sea currents, and how wind and weather influence local factors. Additionally, utilizing smaller vessels offers a distinct advantage in coastal operations by enabling closer access to the shore.