Insights of an AIS-based Risk and Oil Spill assessment tool

The emergence of the internet, and, numerical modelling and the design, development and implementation of tools that enable an efficient coastal management (planning, prevention and response to oil spill) and risk assessment.

A combined methodology to dynamically estimate time and space variable shoreline risk levels from ships has been developed by the Marine Environment and Technology Centre in IST Lisbon and Action Modulers. The latter has been done by integrating numerical metocean forecasts and oil spill simulations with near real time AIS vessel traffic data from MarineTraffic API Service [27]. The risk assessment combines the likelihood of an oil spill occurring from vessels navigating in coastal areas with the assessed consequences to the shoreline.

Oil Spill AIS Data

Spill likelihood is based on dynamic marine weather conditions and statistical information from previous accidents. Shoreline consequences reflect the the spilled oil reaching the coastline and its environmental and socio-economic vulnerabilities. The oil reaching shoreline is quantified with an oil spill fate and behaviour model running multiple virtual spills from vessels over time.

Shoreline risks can be computed from data streamed in real time or from historical data. Results gathered within the Atlantic Regions Coastal Pollution Response project ARCOPOL have shown the ability of the proposed tool to estimate risks, sensitive to dynamic metocean conditions and to oil transport behaviour. Also, how the integration of meteoceanic and oil spill models with coastal vulnerability and AIS data in the quantification of risk, enhances the maritime situational awareness and the decision support model. This provides a more realistic approach in the assessment of shoreline impacts.

Indeed, the Lisbon Agreement, recently ratified by Spain, Morocco, France, Portugal and the EU envisions the regional cooperation in the case of marine pollution incidents. However, the Atlantic sub-region involving Morocco, Madeira and the Canary Islands has not been similarly prepared, despite the increasing oil & gas prospecting and drilling activities developed in this area. For this reason, the Multinational Response and Preparedness to Oil and Chemical spills (MARPOCS) promotes the implementation of a common operational framework supported with novel model-based decision support systems, which adapt to the region and are supported by cross border cooperation and the implementation and training of local, regional and national authorities.

Consortium of MARPOCS is formed by MATETEC-IST (Portugal), Action Modulers (Portugal), CEDRE (France), PLOCAN (Spain), ULPGC (Spain), INRH (Morocco), and OOM-ARDITI (Portugal). Members of its Advisory Board are the APRAM / Portos da Madeira (Portugal); Proteção Civil da Madeira (Portugal); the Directorate General of Security and Emergency of the Canary Islands Government, Spain (Spain); the SASEMAR (Spain); the DCPM-DGAM (Portugal); the African Maritime Safety and Security Agency (AMSSA); the Secretary General for Marine Fisheries at the Moroccan Ministry of Agriculture and Marine Fisheries of Morocco; the Ministry of Energy, Mining, Water and Environment of Morocco; MarineTraffic (UK); MARINER project (coordination: CETMAR); and HNS-MS project (coordination: RBINS). MARPOCS is a two-year project funded by the European Comission (ECHO/SUB/2015/713854/PREP08). Action Modulers is behind MARPOCS project concept and design. It is also supporting IST in the coordination of this project.

For additional information on the model, the reader is referred to Fernandes, R., Braunschweig, F., Lourenço, F., & Neves, R. (2015). Combining operational models and data into a dynamic vessel risk assessment tool for coastal regions. Ocean Science Discussions, 12(4).

Miluše is Academic Relations at MarineTraffic. Since 2013, she is responsible for the management of Academic accounts, Partnerships and Science.