A number of research projects into Arctic oil spill response technology are underway thanks to a joint industry program (JIP) that officially launched in January of this year.
The Arctic Oil Spill Response JIP, under the auspices of the International Association of Oil and Gas Producers, will conduct research over a four-year period in six areas related to oil spill response preparedness, including dispersants, environmental effects, trajectory modeling, remote sensing, mechanical recovery and in-situ burning. Research projects being conducted under the JIP include the fate of dispersed oil under ice, dispersant testing under realistic conditions, and oil spill detection and mapping in low visibility and ice.
The JIP originated from a task force formed in 2008 by the oil spill working group of IPIECA, a global oil and gas association that studies environmental and social issues, seeking to understand the state of knowledge for Arctic oil spill response. Two recommendations came from that task force – one, that a publication detailing information from 40 years of research for Arctic regions be created, and the second, for a joint industry program to be formed looking at areas of oil spill response technology, said Becky Silves, chair of the Arctic Oil Spill Response Technology JIP, in an interview with Rigzone at the Arctic Technology Conference in Houston earlier this month.