THE NATIONAL OIL SPILL CONTINGENCY PLAN FOR GHANA

1.0 INTRODUCTION
Since 1986 the Environmental Protection Agency, through the assistance of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), developed the National Oil Spill Contingency Plan (NOSCP) and brought together the combined resources of the nation, the oil, shipping and exploration industries, to provide a level of preparedness to the threat posed to the environment by oil and chemical spills.
Ghana also became a signatory to the Oil Spill Response and Oil Pollution Preparedness Response and Corporation (OPRC) Convention and has therefore revised the National Oil Spill Contingency Plan( 2010) with an update with the current version (2014) being in a draft stage. Ghana has over the years tried to institute a rapid response for oil spill incidents and is obliged under the convention to undertake a number of activities and also put in place a number of measures to effectively manage an oil spill.
EPA is the Designated National Authority responsible for executing the National Oil Spill Contingency Plan (NOSCP), it has in the past held a series of stakeholders’ consultations/meetings, trainings and exercises in order to keep personnel and the contingency organisation in a state of readiness.
The purpose of the contingency plan is to delineate responsibilities for the operational response to incidents which could result in spillage of oil into the marine and inland waterways of the country.

2.0 THE STEERING COMMITTEE
The steering committee was formed to serve as the governing body responsible for the effective improvement and implementation of the NOSCP.
Membership of the Committee comprises a senior executive {or alternate with equivalent authority (Director or Deputy Director Level)} from each of the following:
i. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
ii. Ghana Maritime Authority (GMA)
iii. Ghana Armed Forces (GAF)
iv. Petroleum Commission (PC)
v. Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA)
vi. National Disaster and Management Organisation (NADMO)
vii. Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation
viii. Ministry of Finance
ix. Ghana National Petroleum Corporation
The steering committee was formed in 2015 but inaugurated on 31st March, 2016 and has established the working group under the contingency plan

3.0 THE MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING
The purpose of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is to establish the framework and responsibilities of identified institutions to ensure effective collaboration with each other on the development, enhancement and the implementation of the National Oil Spill Contingency Plan.
The National Oil Spill Contingency Plan requires different expertise for its execution and because of the varied roles and responsibilities in achieving results there is the need to bring different institutions who will be instrumental in the execution of the contingency plan. The institutions will use their institutional mandates to help acquire the needed resources and personnel in an event of a spillage.
The MOU agreement was signed by the identified institutions on 31st March, 2016. This ceremony was chaired by the Deputy Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation Ms Bernice Helo. This is the list of identified institutions which signed the MOU are as follows:
Institutions                                                                                                                          
1.           Environmental Protection Agency                                                           
2.           Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology, and Innovation
3.           Ministry of Interior                                                                                         
4.           Ministry of Defence                                                                                       
5.           Ministry of Finance                                                                                        
6.           Ministry of Petroleum                                                                                  
7.           Ministry of Transport                                                                                    
8.           Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Regional Integration                            
9.           Petroleum Commission                                                                                
10.          Ghana National Petroleum Corporation                                                
11.          Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority                                                     
12.          Ghana Police Service, Marine Police                                                       
13.          Ghana Maritime Authority                                                                          
14.          Ghana Navy                                                                                                      
15.          Ghana Air Force                                                                                                               
16.          Attorney General’s Department                                                                              
17.          Tema Oil Refinery                                                                                           
18.          Wildlife Division of Forestry Commission                                              
19.          Ghana National Fire Service                                                                       
20.          National Disaster Management Organization                                     
21.          Fisheries Commission                                                                                   
22.          Regional Maritime University                                                                    
23.          Volta River Authority                                                                                     
24.          Ghana Institute of Marine Surveyors                                                     
25.          Ghana National Association of Farmers and Fishermen                 
26.          Information Services Department                                                           
27.          Department of Marine and Fisheries Sciences, UG                          
28.          Ghana Shippers Authority                                                                           
29.          Customs Division of Ghana Revenue Authority                                 
30.          Ghana Immigration Service                        
31.          Ghana National Petroleum Authority                     
32.          Ministry of Local Government & Rural Development
33.          Local Government Service                                          
34.          Rep. of Environmental NGOs                     

4.0 THE NATIONAL CONTINGENCY PLAN WORKING GROUPS
This groups was established to assist the steering committee by considering the overall operational aspects of the National Contingency Plan. The functions of the National Contingency Plan working groups are to develop and implement programs. The institutions which signed the mou have been placed at the different working groups to provide assistance in the event of a spillage. The working groups was inaugurated on 31st October 2016 ant the Tang Palace Hotel in Accra, Ghana. The various institutions under the different working groups are as follows:

THE NATIONAL OIL SPILL CONTINGENCY PLAN WORKING GROUP UNDER THE STEERING COMMITTEE


Administration Working Group

 

Operations Working Group

Environmental Working Group

Chemical Working Group

Waste Management Working Group

Personnel Coordination

 

 

5.0 The way forward
The working groups will be carrying out their activities for the coming year.

 

 

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