Oil Spill Response (OSRL) is a non-profit making organisation, wholly owned by the oil industry, that exists to respond effectively to oil spills wherever they occur. Membership is representative of the world’s most environmentally responsible oil companies, accounting for over 60% of global oil production.
Operating as a single business from the United Kingdom, Singapore, Bahrain, the United States, Brazil, Norway, South Africa, and Indonesia, OSRL is the largest international oil spill response co-operative, and the only one with a global remit.
In 2005, Sea Alarm and OSRL entered into an agreement that paved the way for a joint long-term programme, which aims to develop a range of oiled wildlife response and preparedness activities on a worldwide scale. Both Sea Alarm and OSRL are committed to working together to expand global capacity to effectively deal with oiled wildlife emergencies and to improve access for OSRL members to a response network. The agreement has enabled Sea Alarm to consolidate its independent facilitating role and also to expand its activities.
The main components of the joint programme between Sea Alarm and OSRL are:
Sea Alarm is on-call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to receive notifications of oiled wildlife incidents and requests for assistance. Sea Alarm can be contacted via the OSRL Activation Procedure or directly.
Network of oiled wildlife responders
Sea Alarm staff do not handle animals, but as advisers, help to create the environment and conditions that mobilised hands-on experts need to make a difference during an incident. Sea Alarm maintains close contacts with leading wildlife responders worldwide. This global network of experts can respond individually or collectively to an oil spill emergency, although their participation in an incident is currently on an ad hoc basis and their services are not guaranteed under the Service Level Agreement (SLA) that OSRL has with its oil company Members.
Maintaining a stockpile of essential wildlife response equipment
Response equipment is stockpiled in OSRL’s warehouses in the UK, Bahrain, Singapore and Fort Lauderdale. All the equipment has been pre-packaged and customs-cleared, enabling it to be rapidly sent out.
Developing a database with country preparedness information
Sea Alarm keeps its own database of Country Wildlife Response Profiles. These profiles, which will eventually include all of the coastal countries or regions in the world, complement the information in ITOPF’s Country Profiles and provide key information on a country’s level of preparedness for oiled wildlife responses.