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Co-funded by European Union Humanitarian Aid & Civil Protection
MARINER 2nd Quarterly Newsletter - February 2017
Last October the project partners met in Cardiff for the 2nd coordination meeting of MARINER. During this 2-day event, the partnership reviewed the project work plan and agreed on the detailed programme for addressing the tasks scheduled for the coming months. Additionally, they had the opportunity to present the work done so far to the Advisory Board, which is comprised of representatives of national competent authorities for maritime safety in the UK, France, Spain and Portugal. Specifically, this meeting was attended by delegates from Sasemar; the Spanish Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, Food and Environment; Galician Coastguards (Spain); and MARPOCS project coordinator (IST, Portugal).
Past activities
2nd coordination meeting in Cardiff
The MARINER promotional video was released in October. In 10 minutes it presents the basics of the project: the contextualization, the objectives, the tasks, and the partners’ expectations about the project. The video includes interviews with the MARINER partners speaking in their native language and with subtitles in English, Portuguese, and Spanish (French will be available soon).
MARINER introductory video
Last December our partner ACTION Modulers presented MARINER at the final workshop of HNS-MS project in Brussels (Improving Member States preparedness to face an HNS pollution of the Marine System). The aim of this workshop was to present HNS-MS project results and to discuss about future possible collaborations in this field. All the presentations are available on the HNS-MS website.  
MARINER participated in the HNS-MS project final Workshop
In October, the Portuguese Marine Pollution Response Directorate organised a national exercise off their coast in Portimão (Atlantic Polex 2016). The offshore scenario envisaged a collision between a cargo vessel and a tanker resulting in a 6000 m3 spill of crude oil. At this exercise, the 1st version of the MARINER Platform was tested, which is a Common Operational Picture that aims to answer to the need for an integrated framework for preparedness and response to HNS spills.
MARINER tools tested at Portuguese exercise
Additionally, our partner Uvigo is recording videos and taking photographs at several exercises organised in Galicia (Spain). For instance, there is already a short clip available showing the activation of the Port of Vigo’s contingency plan (click on this paragraph to watch it). These audio-visual materials will be used for educational and outreach videos, posters or presentations to be produced in the frame of the MARINER project.
The MARINER Platform integrates an oil and chemical drift modelling interface that provides basic to more advanced simulation set ups; from 2D drift-only simulations to 3D simulations that include, among other processes, horizontal surface spreading, natural vertical dispersion, buoyancy,  and oil weathering, etc. In cooperation with CIMA - University of Algarve – who provided the high-resolution hydrodynamic model for the area - MARINER modelling tools were used by Portuguese Maritime Authority and results were validated with drifting buoys. The final version of the MARINER Platform is planned to be delivered before summer this year.
MARINER is compiling existing HNS preparedness and response knowledge generated by EU funded public research as well as by relevant organisations. Eventually, all this information will be made available to end users through a user-friendly online tool, which will be available before summer this year. For the time being, 270 Knowledge Outputs have been identified and classified from the 29 projects and 20 organisations analysed.  Considering projects, over half of Knowledge Outputs (KO) collected are in the form of reports, followed by scientific publications (20%), guidelines and standards (9%) and services/tools (6%).
Ongoing activities
HNS preparedness and response knowledge compilation
HNS response
MARINER keeps on contacting experts from outside the maritime sector (e.g. from the chemical industry, civil protection, and fire crews working on-land, inland waters, etc.) to assess if their HNS protocols can be adapted to the response-at-sea and, eventually, improve the existent marine procedures. For instance, Cedre met Curium, Sobegi (Industrial fire-fighters), French Navy fire-fighters, Séché Urgences Interventions, Canadian public organisations, and SARP. Similarly, INTECMAR met with firefighters in Spain and with a safety and protection equipment supplier (Dräger). They are also having meetings with delegates from the National Civil Protection Academy in Spain. Main findings and conclusions will be gathered in a report to be delivered before summer.
Public Health England (PHE) is producing an open source downloadable bespoke training software tool that will offer desktop exercises simulating maritime incidents at local, regional or international levels. The tool incorporates a database of HNS and environmental information, which users populate for their own region, together with a modelling interface and a library of exercise materials providing scenarios, feedback and debrief documentation.
Exercise software tool
The software will produce maps, datasheets and modelling simulations, all aligned with injects encompassing each phase of the incident management cycle and incorporating options for cross border alerting and response. The system is to be piloted at a UK Workshop in the summer with a finalised version planned for release in late 2017.
Training package on HNS spill management
Cedre is working on a training package addressing the most relevant aspects to consider when managing HNS spills at sea or on the shore. The course will be aimed at crisis managers and on-site commanders. The package will comprise the following modules: General aspects (chemical behaviour etc.); Prevention and preparedness; Response; and Post Crisis. It will be presented at a workshop in Brest after summer this year. More specific information will be provided in future communications.
Our partner CIIMAR will be hosting the 3rd coordination meeting of MARINER, which will be held in Matosinhos at the new facilities of CIIMAR, on April 26th & 27th. Additionally, this meeting will precede the first MARINER workshop, also in the same venue on 28th. At this public event, project partners will present the main features of the project with special focus on the training package that is being elaborated, which deals with estimating fate and behaviour of HNS at sea for both contingency planning and operational purposes.
Coming soon
Meeting and workshop in Portugal
ACTION Modulers (AM) and Public Health England (PHE) will be presenting MARINER at the International Oil Spill Conference that will take place in California in May this year. PHE will showcase the MARINER open source tool created for delivering bespoke training with user defined regional inputs. AM’s presentation will focus on HNS modelling and the MARINER platform. Additionally, Cedre will be promoting MARINER through project leaflets at their stand.
Further information will be provided on the website in due course.
A closer look at MARINER Partners:
ACTION Modulers
• Research & Development Unit: developing and applying software related with numerical modelling of the environment. ACTION Modulers’ flagship product, MOHID Studio, is used by hundreds of users worldwide. • Protection & Safety Unit: consulting solutions in defining and implementing corporate and legal requirements with regards to life and fire safety, including fire risk analysis and evacuation techniques.
ACTION Modulers is a Portuguese consulting company located in Mafra (close to Lisbon), mainly focused on numerical modelling, development of technological solutions and safety planning services. Through a strong connection to the university environment (ACTION Modulers is a spinoff of the Instituto Superior Técnico), the company continuously participates in scientific and technological development achieving a high level of skills and innovative solutions. Two main business areas compose the company:
In MARINER, ACTION Modulers is taking the opportunity to develop some breakthrough web-based technologies in the field of preparedness and response to chemical spills, particularly: • A web-based / mobile-friendly on-demand chemical spill trajectory forecasting system, powered by a novel technological platform - ACTION Seaport (, aiming to support navigation, piloting and safety operations in both coastal (e.g. ports) and open sea (National Maritime Authorities) activities. • A web-service oriented solution to allow model interaction with the training package developed by PHE, and thus, allowing trainees to easily start running and exploring chemical spill model results. The above mentioned systems are both supported by a state-of-the-art, free and open source chemical spill numerical model (MOHID), and, during MARINER, the MOHID chemical spill model will be also updated by ACTION Modulers to estimate environmental impacts / biological effects from chemical spills.
ACTION Modulers team
Disclaimer: This newsletter includes information about activities implemented with the financial assistance of the European Union. The views expressed herein should not be taken, in any way, to reflect the official opinion of the European Union, and the European Commission is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.