A series of three workshops to help prepare countries in the Central and Eastern Mediterranean to respond to pollution incidents has been completed, with a final online workshop (23 November).
Participants from 11 countries attended the final workshop, which followed an initial online workshop (7-8 September) and a series of practical country-specific sessions on the use of the ARPEL Readiness Evaluation Tool for Oil Spills and the Sea Alarm Self-Assessment Tool (SAT) for Oiled Wildlife Response (between September-November), organized in Albania, Bosnia, and Herzegovina, Croatia, Cyprus, Greece, Israel, Libya, Monaco, Montenegro, Slovenia, and Turkey. Participants from Egypt and Lebanon also attended the final online event.
The series of activities was organized by the Regional Marine Pollution Emergency Response Centre for the Mediterranean Sea (REMPEC), under the auspices of IMO’s Integrated Technical Cooperation Programme (ITCP), with the support of Sea Alarm, ITOPF, ARPEL, and Polaris Applied Sciences.
The trio trilogy of activities enabled each country to acquire practical and focused experience on the use of both tools. The participants agreed on conclusions and recommendations, notably to urge all contracting parties to use these tools, to improve preparedness and response across the region, and to capitalize on the outcome of countries’ assessments to implement improvement processes at a sub-regional level.
The workshop recognized the instrumental role of REMPEC in coordinating multi-institutional processes and strengthening cooperation in the Mediterranean region. Follow-up activities have been included under IMO’s ITCP in 2022 to support Central and Eastern Mediterranean countries in the development and implementation of their respective national oil spill preparedness and response programs.