Oil Spill Impact and Mitigation Options

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Oil spill give a tremendous effect on marine environment, social activities, economic as well as the fisheries and mariculture. However, the severity impact depends of the type and quantity of oil being spill, the climate and sea state and also the sensitivity of the living things towards the oil spill.

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The marine environment provides habitats for many flora and fauna. The diversity of the ecosystem could be disrupted by the impact of oil spill since extensive range of complex ecosystem exist within this marine environment. The oil spill could lead to the loss of significant organisms from their habitat that will later contribute to the invasion of another opportunistic species. The higher degree of toxicity will result in the deterioration of cellular functions and physical smothering resulting in the phycological impairment for the affected living organisms. The living organisms that found on the sea surface and shorelines are the most vulnerable to the oil spill after effects. For example, the mangroves, saltmarshes and corals that will take up to 10 years or greater to undergoes natural recovering. The seabirds and penguin are the species at risk even some of it responds well to cleaning. The oiled plumage reduces the ability of seabirds to take off and fly as well the ability to withstand cold climate. The birds that suffering from cold climate, loss of buoyancy and exhaustion may not survive. In this tough situation, the effective planning and execution of response operation are needed as the first step to recover the marine environment back to its natural functions. On the other hand, the tourisms industries will run into economic downturn for a period of time as the coastal activities such as boating, bathing and diving being disrupted. The business that depends on the coastal activities such as hotels, restaurants and recreational area are the most vulnerable to this condition. The agriculture, coastal engineering, sea salt industry and coastal community also being affected. The ports activities should be reduced to prevent the floating oil from being spread to unaffected area or disturbing the booms or any cleaning activities. This circumstance should be notified early to allow proper action to be taken in order to protect the marinas and industrial water intake. Mitigation options should be proposed immediately to put a stop to this situation. Furthermore, the oil spills also disturb the productivity of business that depend on the sea for example fisheries and mariculture. The oil spill leads to the oiling of equipment and contamination of seafood. The long-term effect on commercial can lead to the significant losses for the fisheries and mariculture activities. The effect on natural fisheries resources and fish population are intensely difficult to control from other factors such as climate effects. Early action and effective contingency plan as well as the oil spill respond measure can help to minimize the effect of oil spill on the fisheries and mariculture.

However, the mitigation options should be identified carefully before any step can be done. The booms are the primary technique ratified by many governments followed by the used of skimmer. Both design and suitable condition to be used should be identify carefully as well as the other factor such as reliability, ease of used and speed of deployment to ensure the effectiveness of this mitigation options. The information based on the type of oil being spill, the viscosity and the sea state such as tides and wind also crucial to secure a successful mitigation. The booms are used to concentrate the oil spill before the skimmer can do it tasks to recover and pump the oil into the storage. The recover process on the open sea enhanced by the used of aircraft and recovery vessel to monitored the cleanup process. The performance of both equipment should be monitored and the inspection process should be carried out regularly to maintain personal training and the equipment standard. Besides these two methods, absorbent also used to aid the recovering process of oil spill. Yet, the use of absorbent in open sea cleanup is tremendously ineffective due to the complication of accurate transmission into the oil. The excessive used of sorbents can lead to secondary contamination and conflict between other mitigation options. This will lead to serious financial and logistics issues. However, the used of sorbents is verified effective in certain scenarios where the others mitigation are not feasible specifically during shoreline washing operations. Therefore, the priority and circumstances of the situation should be identified early before any step of mitigation can be choose and accomplish.

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Oil Spill Impact And Mitigation Options. (2021, Apr 05). Retrieved November 29, 2022 , from

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