Sea Alarm attended the UK National Standing Environment Group Chairs Meeting, which took place in London on 29 April. Organised annually by the Maritime and Coastal Agency (MCA), the purpose of the meeting is to inform Environmental Group Chairs and key individuals about eventual changes in the UK National Oil Spill Plan or related documents and procedures, and discuss recent developments, case histories and relevant current topics. This is the second time Sea Alarm has been invited to the meetings as an observer, taking the opportunity to report on relevant international developments in the field of oiled wildlife preparedness and response.
The Environmental Group has an important role to play in oil spill response events as it is charged with the task of providing environmental advice at any time during response operations. There are 16 distinct regions in the UK, each with its own Environmental Group. Key local and national organisations, statutory bodies, NGOs and individuals can be invited to be part of the Environmental Group, depending on the specific expertise or statutory representation that is required with regards to the spill development and its characteristics. Oiled wildlife response is one of the activities carried out under supervision of the Environmental Group.