Oil Pollution Emergency Plans (OPEPs)/Oil Spill Contingency Plans (OSCPs) are documents that describe the measures in place to respond to the unlikely event of a large-scale hydrocarbon spill, be that offshore or onshore.

Aventus has prepared numerous OPEPs and OSCPs, and liaises with the likes of the Australian Marine Oil Spill Centre (AMOSC), Oil Spill Response Ltd (OSRL), Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), Oil Response Company of Australia (ORCA), WA Department of Transport (DoT) and the Emergency Management Division (EMD) of the Victorian Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions (DJPR) to ensure that response strategies and resources are appropriately tailored to the risk.

Preparing OPEPs/OSCPs broadly involves:

  • Selecting one or more credible spill scenarios based on project-specific details;

  • Undertaking oil spill trajectory modelling based on these scenarios;

  • Determining the sensitivities of the potentially affected environment;

  • Working within the client’s organisational structure, the industry’s resources and the adjacent state or Territory’s resources to ensure the client is fully prepared to respond to a large-scale hydrocarbon spill;

  • Using all the above to determine the most suitable spill response strategies (and documenting this in a concise manner); and

  • Conducting desktop exercises to ensure all relevant project personnel are capable of meeting their OPEP commitments.

Aventus also prepares and coordinates the development of offshore Operational and Scientific Monitoring Programs (OSMP). OSMPs are designed to describe the arrangements in place to monitor the short- and long-term environmental and socio-economic effects of a marine oil spill from exploration or production activities. Moreover, they ensure that the resources identified to undertake this work are contractually ready to do so quickly. This broadly involves:

  • Identifying ecological and socio-economic sensitivities at risk of a large-scale hydrocarbon spill;

  • Identifying existing baseline data for these sensitivities;

  • Where baseline data is absent or scant, designing pre-spill studies to be undertaken to gain baseline data;

  • Designing operational studies to track the spill; and

  • Designing scientific studies to determine the impact of a large-scale hydrocarbon spill.

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