Antwerp Port Authority announces new programme to combat oil spills

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Antwerp, September 3, 2014 (STAT):-Antwerp Port Authority has appointed a service provider, Brabo Cleaning Company, to be responsible for combating oil spills within the port area. The contingency plans cover not only actual but also potential spills on the water. Where previously incidents were dealt with on an ad hoc basis, the new programme provides for a more organised and effective approach. Since it bears responsibility for the waterways, the Port Authority decided to raise the response to a higher level by appointing an exclusive service provider.

Under the terms of the contract, the service provider must guarantee a very quick response to any oil spill on the water in the port area, so as to contain the pollution as quickly as possible. It will then be responsible for the necessary cleaning work to ship's sides, quays, river banks and civil engineering structures. Further, the pollution must be removed from the water surface quickly by mechanical methods.

The appointment of a single service provider will enable the company concerned to make the necessary investment so that the equipment used can be kept in tip-top condition, enabling the company to react quickly and efficiently to any incident.

The containment and clean-up costs will be borne by the entity that caused the spill, on the principle of “the polluter pays.” Companies in the port will henceforth be required to call upon the service provider appointed by the Port Authority. In the meantime the Port Authority will draw up port regulations specifying the actions to be taken by any port user in case of an actual or potential spillage of oil into the water. In 2013 there were 110 oil spills recorded.

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