NEW SYSTEMS COMING TO DETECT AND MANAGE OIL SPILLS

The Daily Express article of October 29th 2018, captioned “A Graveyard in the Gulf of Paria” refers.
 
Pollution from oil spills poses a threat to aquatic and human life.  To prevent and decrease the incidences of such spills, real time monitoring of the marine environment is key together with the enforcement of existing legislation.
 
The Maritime Services Division of the Ministry of Works and Transport is in the process of reviewing legislation pertaining to the management of wreckage found in the maritime Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of Trinidad and Tobago for the purpose of strengthening the provisions of the existing Shipping Act.
 
Additionally, the Institute of Marine Affairs (IMA) and the Ministry of Energy and Energy Industries are collaborating to install, in the near future, both an ocean-atmosphere wave rider buoy network and a radar system that will monitor the Gulf of Paria for oil spills and other anomalies.     This system will enable a rapid and much more efficient response to any pollutants in the waters of the Gulf of Paria, as well as provide scientific data and information to facilitate prosecution of entities responsible for the spills.  Early detection of oil spills from the combined buoys and the radar system is a major step towards environment management whereby clean–up action can be undertaken immediately as spills occur. The use of the early warning network system can be used to link mystery spills to perpetrators, and be used as evidence for litigation of responsible party. 
 
In the meanwhile, the IMA continues to respond to all environmental incidents including oil spills located in the waters of Trinidad and Tobago, once reported.