Oil Spill Response Ltd (OSRL) and its wildlife partners are today marking 10 years since key industry, governmental, and non-governmental stakeholders came together at a lunch meeting at Interspill 2012 in London hosted by OSRL and Sea Alarm, to discuss the “Future of Global Oiled Wildlife Response and Preparedness.”
This meeting saw representatives from the oil industry, shipping industry, government, and non-governmental stakeholders endorse improved integration of wildlife response preparedness and of wildlife response organisations into industry and governmental systems.
Several important developments were catalysed by the 2012 event, including the foundation of the Global Oiled Wildlife Response System (GOWRS), a multi-year, oil industry-funded project to design an international framework for oiled wildlife response.
The event also saw an updated Good Practice document, developed by leading wildlife response organisations and published by Ipieca, covering ‘Wildlife response preparedness’ and ‘Key principles for the protection, care and rehabilitation of oiled wildlife’.
A new multi-stakeholder forum was created named the ‘Wildlife Preparedness and Response Community of Practice’ to support further implementation of wildlife response preparedness good practice by OSRL and Ipieca Members.
In addition, the GOWRS Project launched in 2012, is set to become a Global Oiled Wildlife Response Service in 2022, a Tier 3 Wildlife Assessment Team integrated into industry preparedness as part of OSRL’s guaranteed services to its Members.
OSRL, together with Sea Alarm and the GOWRS Network Steering Group* reconnected at Interspill 2022 to mark this important milestone. Ten years on from the 2012 event, this meeting provided an opportunity to bring all stakeholders together again, to reflect on developments to date and to assess the current strategic environment and future wildlife response preparedness priorities. The group assessed the progress on the objectives that were originally set out during the Interspill 2012 meeting and shared ideas for a future multi-stakeholder work programme to address remaining preparedness gaps.
OSRL CEO, Robert Limb, commented: “Today marks a very important milestone in the Global Oiled Wildlife Response Service. While the focus on the industry and governments has turned increasingly towards the transition to net-zero, the risk of oil spills remains from shipping and from oil exploration and production activities. The risk to wildlife is compounded by climate change and loss of habitat.”
He continues: “Today, in-country preparedness for wildlife response remains low in many parts of the world relative to oil spill preparedness. Improving the global preparedness picture and identifying countries or regions with high risk and low preparedness is, therefore, a key priority for the next decade and will require active support from all key stakeholders. Actively involving leading wildlife response organisations in these efforts will also help ensure the sustainability and resilience of the expertise and know-how needed to respond effectively when incidents do happen. Today’s meeting has been pivotal in ensuring we collect new ideas, thoughts and feedback and to gauge interest in working collaboratively to address the above challenges for the next decade and beyond.”
Notes to editors
*Global Oiled Wildlife Response Service (GOWRS)
The Global Oiled Wildlife Response Service (GOWRS) is a collaboration of ten of the world’s leading professional oiled wildlife response organisations representing a variety of models and missions unanimously committed to the best possible outcomes for wildlife. It currently consists of Aiuká (Brazil), Focus Wildlife International (U.S.A.), International Bird Rescue (U.S.A.), Oiled Wildlife Care Network/UC Davis (OWCN) (U.S.A.), PRO BIRD (Germany), the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) (U.K.), SANCCOB (South Africa), Tri-State Bird Rescue and Research (U.S.A.), WILDBASE/Massey University (New Zealand), and Wildlife Centre Ostend (Belgium)
Oil Spill Response Limited (OSRL)
Oil Spill Response Limited (OSRL) is the largest international industry-funded cooperative. It exists to respond to oil spills wherever in the world they may occur, providing preparedness, response, and intervention services. OSRL is wholly owned by most of the environmentally responsible oil and gas companies around the globe, and its membership represents the majority of the world’s oil production. It currently employs 275 people across twelve locations around the world.
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