What is the role of an Oil Spill Removal Organization (OSRO)?

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The US Coast Guard established the Oil Spill Removal Organization (OSRO) classification in response to regulatory requirements of OPA 90. OSRO is a voluntary program and was developed to assist oil handling facilities and vessels in preparing spill response plans.

Oil Pollution Act

The Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (OPA 90) was passed in response to the Exxon Valdez oil spill in 1989. This law forms part of US oil spill governance to mitigate and prevent civil liability from oil spills. OPA 90 requires companies to develop and maintain plans to help prevent spills and detailed plans to contain and respond to spills that may occur.

Requirements

Companies who are required to submit a response plan must, amongst other things, identify the personnel and equipment necessary to remove an oil spill and to prevent a substantial threat of such a discharge. The magnitude of the investment, however, in oil recovery equipment, storage and training personnel to remove spills, in all foreseeable locations and operating environments is enormous.

Oil Spill Removal Organization (OSRO)

To meet OPA90's statutory requirements, each response plan must identify the means for accomplishing the response tasks. By using an OSRO, plan holders do not have to present detailed lists of response resources. An OSRO is a contracted response organization. If an oil spill removal contractor has been evaluated by the U.S. Coast Guard, and their capability is equal to or exceeds the response capability needed by companies, the response plan may identify only the OSRO, and need not list all of the information about response personnel and equipment.

Management of OSRO Classification

The OSRO classification process provides standard guidelines by which the Coast Guard and plan developers can evaluate an OSRO's potential to respond to and recover oil spills of various sizes. OSROs may receive classifications for different spill sizes occurring in different types of operating areas (rivers, canals, near shore, offshore, or open ocean). Classifications are based upon minimum equipment amounts and response time standards outlined in the Coast Guard's OSRO Classification Guidelines. The Coast Guard's National Strike Force maintains the OPA 90 mandated response resource inventory, a centralized database listing national and international spill response capabilities and each OSRO's classification information along with its other response resource data.

We're always interested in anything that aids Oil Spill Response Organizations in improving your capabilities. Being able to easily manage and track your personnel & equipment is one of the reasons we created [D4H] Technologies designed especially for response organizations.

P.S .............We'll be attending Interspill 2015 so please contact us if you'd like to set up a meeting in March.

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