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INTERNATIONAL TANKER OWNERS POLLUTION FEDERATION LIMITED. Marine chemical spill: an overview of response issues. Stéphane Grenon Technical adviser ITOPF Intertanko Chemical Tanker Committee Singapore November 11, 2004. Outline. ITOPF Issues with marine chemical spills

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marine chemical spill an overview of response issues



Marine chemical spill: an overview of response issues

Stéphane Grenon

Technical adviser


Intertanko Chemical Tanker Committee


November 11, 2004

  • Issues with marine chemical spills
  • What is expected from ship owners?

M/V Accord, China


What is ITOPF ?

International Tanker Owners Pollution Federation


What is ITOPF ?

  • Established in 1968,

following Torrey Canyon

  • Small not for profit org.

based in London

  • Technical Advisers

(Biologists, Chemists,


  • International Service


  • Tanker owners & bareboat charters
  • > 8,400 tankers
  • 196 million GT
  • ~98% of world’s tonnage


  • All other types of ship
  • 310 million GT
  • > ½ of spills attended


  • Respond on behalf of members, clubs, IOPC Fund
  • Advise and assist all parties on most effective clean-up to minimise resource damage
  • Always advisory
  • Offer guidance on likely admissibility of claims (reasonableness)
  • Monitor events, clean-up activities and investigate damage to coastal resources

Technical Services

  • Response to marine oil & chemical spills
  • Damage assessment & claims analysis
  • Contingency planning & advisory work
  • Training, seminars, conferences
  • Information services
          • Publications
          • Databases
          • Website:

itopf and chemical spill response
ITOPF and chemical spill response
  • Internal working group
  • ITOPF response procedure
    • Training
    • Reference materials
    • Link with other partners (industry, governments)
    • Contract with UK National Chemical Emergency Centre (NCEC)
itopf objectives
ITOPF Objectives

To parallel our role with respect to oil spills and to provide prompt advice to our ship-owners and their insurers in the event of:

  • An emergency
  • General enquiries
  • HNS Convention
  • OPRC-HNS Protocol

M.V. ‘ACCORD’, China, Oct. 2002

chemicals other substances itopf s involvement recently
Chemicals & Other Substances- ITOPF’s Involvement Recently
  • Incidents Attended
    • ‘CO-OP VENTURE’ Japan, July 2002 (Oil & Corn)
    • ‘JOLLY RUBINO’, South Africa, Sept. 2002 (Oil & Class 3 hazard)
    • ‘ACCORD’, China, Oct. 2002 (Methyl methacrylate, Polypropylene Glycol Methyl Ether Acetate)
    • ‘FU SHAN HAI’, Sweden, June 2003 (Oil & potassium chloride)
    • ‘TASMAN SPIRIT’, Pakistan, July 2003 (Iranian Light crude oil)
    • ‘BOW MARINER’, USA, March 2004 (oil & ethanol)
  • Incidents Notified
    • ‘IRINA 2’, Papua New Guinea, July 2002 (Palm Oil)
    • ‘BOW EAGLE’, UK, August 2002 (Ethyl acetate)
    • ‘TAI PING’, New Zealand, Oct. 2002 (Urea)
    • ‘METIN KA’, Turkey, Dec, 2002, (Sulphuric acid) / Jan. 2004, Oman (Ethanol)
    • ‘JAMBO’, UK, June 2003 (Zinc concentrate & Cadmium)
    • ‘PANAM SERRENA, Sardinia, Italy, January 2004 (Benzene)
  • HNS spills not as frequent as oil spills
  • Quantities spilled can be small
    • Chemical tanker: 40000 m3 - 150000 m3 (many products onboard)
    • Container: 10m3
    • ICB: 1m3
    • Drum: 200 litres
  • But effects can be large!
    • 1 tonne chlorine = 4.8 km safety zone
  • Response might be complex
    • Wide variety of products
    • Wide variety of behaviour
    • Wide variety of toxicity
    • Effects on marine environment not well known
    • Response technologies not as developed as oil
    • Potential effects on population more severe than oil

The OPRC-HNS Protocol(Protocol on Preparedness, Response and Co-operation to Pollution Incidents by Hazardous and Noxious Substances, 2000)

  • Requires national & regional systems for preparedness and response to HNS incidents.
  • Calls for co-operation between governments, port authorities, shipping industry and the chemical industry.
oprc hns protocol
OPRC-HNS Protocol

Enters into force 12 months after 15 States

have ratified the Protocol.

Current Status = Ratified by 9 States

(Ecuador, Greece, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Singapore, Sweden, Uruguay, Vanuatu)

IMO encouraging early ratification of both OPRC-HNS Protocol

and the HNS Convention to provide maximum protection in the

event of an HNS incident.

chemical emergency response
Chemical emergency response



Substance (s)




Sensitive resources

Health & Safety





need for information
Need for information
  • Access to the ship/cargo owner is critical
  • A strong communication link between owner and responders will be necessary!
  • Information on substance is critical

M/V Panam Serrena, Italy

which information
Which information?
  • Name and identification number
      • UN or CAS number, identification markings
      • type of packaging
  • Emergency contact number
  • Quantity on board or spilled
  • MSDS, bill of lading, stowage plans, cargo manifest

M/V Jolly Rubinno, South Africa

which information1
Which information?
  • Name and contact details of the ship’s agent or shipper or manufacturer
  • Container/package type, size and quantity, condition
  • Local environmental conditions (weather, temperature, sea conditions, wind speed and direction)
  • Length, breadth and appearance of any slicks or plumes, including direction of movement and behaviour (i.e. floating, sinking, colour, odour, reaction, etc.)
which information2
Which information?
  • Have there been reports of any injuries or adverse effects to human health or the environment?
  • Proximity to sensitive resources and residential areas
  • Notification of emergency services, local / national authorities
chemical response summary
Chemical responseSummary
  • More complex than oil spill response
    • Behaviour
    • Hazards
    • Health & Safety
  • Responders and population more at risk
  • Must have a contingency plan!
    • Experts (chemical + health)
    • Local authorities (protection of population)
    • Tools
chemical response summary1
Chemical responseSummary
  • Most of the information to start the response is with the ship owner/agent
  • Must be ready to transfer that information in the initial moments of an incident