Sea Alarm is excited to announce that we have been nominated for the 2014 Thor Heyerdahl Maritime Environmental Award. The award, which has been given out six times since 2001, recognises an individual, legal entity, or organisation for outstanding contribution to the protection of the marine environment. Sea Alarm has been nominated for its work in the areas of conservation and awareness raising.
Developed to address the problems faced by wildlife rehabilitators in Europe in responding during oil spills, Sea Alarm has been a driving force in changing the perception of oiled wildlife response, once seen as emotion-driven and minimally effective, to being recognised as a professional, well-organised activity that has a positive impact on the animals affected.
To do so, Sea Alarm has worked closely with oiled wildlife responders, the oil and shipping industries, and national and international governing bodies to improve cooperation and collaboration before, during and after a response.
Examples of these activities include:
• Raising awareness of the importance of integrated wildlife response planning, training and exercises, and the key role that advanced expert organisations can play in a response.
• Organisation of regional and global conferences to bring oiled wildlife responders, regulators and industry together to share knowledge and develop common ground
• Encouraging and facilitating the development of standards for planning, response activities and training
• Providing 24/7 assistance and coordination of wildlife response activities during a large number of oil spills, including the Jessica, Prestige, Tricolor, Estonia Mystery Spill and Full City responses
• Working in cooperation with Oil Spill Response Ltd. to provide preparedness and response assistance to the global oil industry
• Assisting stakeholders in various countries such as Belgium, the Netherlands, Ireland, Germany and Norway, and International Agreements, including HELCOM, the Bonn Agreement and the Barcelona Convention in developing the wildlife components of their oil spill response plans
• Providing initial training and on-going preparedness exercises for wildlife response organisations, individual countries, and the oil industry
• Developing a Global Oiled Wildlife Response System, in cooperation with leading international expert organisations in this field.
The winner will receive the award at a ceremony in Oslo on 31 March, 2014.