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Co-funded by European Union Humanitarian Aid & Civil Protection
MARINER 3rd Quarterly Newsletter - May 2017
On April 26th and 27th all MARINER partners gathered in the new CIIMAR facilities in Matosinhos for the 3rd project coordination meeting. This meeting was then followed by the first MARINER workshop entitled “Using technology towards a better preparedness to HNS spills”. At this event project partners presented the main features of the MARINER project to the Portuguese stakeholders. The agenda included live demonstrations of two project outputs, namely the online exercise and training tool by Public Health England (CRCE Wales), and the MARINER platform by Action Modulers (scroll down for further information).
Past activities
3rd Coordination Meeting and Workshop in Matosinhos, Portugal
During the 1st and 2nd March CETMAR, on behalf of the MARINER partnership, participated in the coordination meeting and workshop organised by MARPOCS project (Multinational response and preparedness to oil and chemical spills) in Casablanca (Morocco). This collaboration was framed within the cooperation protocol signed last year to facilitate complementarity, improve efficiency, and exploit synergies between these two initiatives and HNS-MS project (Improving Member States preparedness to face an HNS pollution of the Marine System).
MARINER participated in the MARPOCS meeting and workshop in Casablanca
The workshop also included presentations from the Portuguese National Maritime Authority and I-SKYEX. The latter described work on the aerial observation of HNS spills with UAV. All the presentations are available on the project website.
The workshop was organised by INRH (Institute National de Recherche Halieutique) and focused on the Moroccan preparedness and response capacity to marine pollution.
MARINER is collating existing HNS preparedness and response knowledge generated by EU-funded research as well as by relevant institutions working on this field. Today, 440 Knowledge Outputs have been identified and classified from the 44 projects and 28 organisations analysed. Eventually, all this information will be made publicly available through a user-friendly online tool later this summer. The tool will allow users to browse among the 440 resources using either different filters (e.g. by selecting the areas of knowledge of interest for the user among contingency planning, response protocols, environmental monitoring, etc., or the type of resource: report, guideline, model, etc.) or an advanced search engine with free text options.
Ongoing activities
HNS preparedness and response knowledge
The MARINER Platform is a Common Operational Picture (COP) that integrates an oil and chemical drift modelling interface providing options ranging from basic forecasts to more advanced simulation set ups; from 2D drift-only simulations to 3D simulations. The 3D feature includes, among other processes, horizontal surface spreading, natural vertical dispersion, buoyancy and oil weathering. The COP is now connected to 2 HNS databases built in previous EU funded projects
MARINER Platform: modelling the fate and impact of HNS spills
Finally, AM and CIIMAR are working together on a new module that, from a toxicological perspective, will identify geospatially the areas that may be significantly affected by a spill. It will combine toxicological databases and population/ecological modelling with 3D HNS transport, fate and toxicity modelling.
Besides presenting the main features of the selected item, the tool will also give information on how to download or access the resource chosen.
(ARCOPOLplatform and HNS-MS) in which several MARINER partners were also involved. These databases provide physicochemical data that are essential for forecasting the fate of the HNS spill. Furthermore, our partner Action Modulers (AM) is now integrating into the COP a module for atmospheric transport. This will allow forecasting the fate of any HNS that evaporates in the event of a spill as well as comparing concentration of HNS in the air with relevant human health based Protective Action Criteria.
The International Health Regulations (2005) (IHR) are a legally binding agreement that provides a unique public health framework in the form of obligations and recommendations that enable State Parties to better prevent, prepare for, and respond to public health emergencies of international concern. Since its inception the scope of IHR has been expanded from communicable diseases such as cholera, plague and yellow fever to all events that may constitute a public health emergency of international concern. This can include chemical events such as HNS incidents at sea.
Training package: International Health Regulations & HNS incidents at sea
The final version of the MARINER Platform is planned to be delivered after summer.
In this context, our partner Public Health England (PHE - CRCE Wales) is producing an e-learning package that will cover the key elements of IHR with particular relevance to the risk assessment of maritime events under IHR. This will further strengthen the protection of public health and the environment. It will be freely available on the MARINER website by the end of this year.
On June 28th Public Health England is holding the MARINER UK workshop in Cardiff to demonstrate the tools and guidance being developed to enhance response to maritime HNS Incidents. The 1-day event aims to raise awareness of the MARINER project and give a demonstration of a web-based tool that can generate maritime exercises to support planning and preparedness.
Coming soon
Training workshop for planning and response to maritime HNS incidents
Our partner Divulgare (University of Vigo) is working on an animated video to raise awareness on the potential environmental impact of HNS spills. The final goal of this video is to help to understand the need of implementing appropriate measures to minimise the risk of accidents and reduce the impacts when happening.  The video will follow the format used in an animated short ("How to act in case of a HNS spill?") produced in a previous project which proved to be successful in both conveying the message and reaching a wide range of stakeholders, including those beyond maritime world.
Awareness raising video
This workshop is aimed at persons involved with incident command and control and scientific advice during maritime incidents with potential for shoreline pollution. Check MARINER website for further information.
ARCOPOLplatform video: How to act in case of a HNS spill?
A closer look at MARINER Partners:
CIIMAR brings together 460 researchers (divided into 27 research groups), covering an extensive diversity of scientific and technological skills and expertise allowing to address important economic and societal challenges with integrative approaches. This centre is organized into 3 thematic lines: • Global changes and ecosystems services; • Aquaculture and seafood quality; • Marine Biotechnology.
The CIIMAR - Interdisciplinary Centre of Marine and Environmental Research - is a private non-profit association and a leading research and advanced training institution of the University of Porto. CIIMAR´s new facilities are located at the heart of the maritime industry and services in the Northern region of Portugal (Leixões harbour). Its mission is to develop excellent transdisciplinary and transnational research, promote technological development and innovation and support public policies and governance in the area of Marine and Environmental Sciences.
The coordinator of the MARINER Project at CIIMAR (Miguel Santos) is the principal investigator of the Endocrine Disruptors and Emergent Contaminants Group (EDEC) and professor at the Faculty of Sciences, University of Porto. The main aim of this group is to improve environmental risk assessment of endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) and emerging contaminants in aquatic ecosystems (e.g. understand the mechanisms of toxicity of chemicals, single and in mixtures), and develop new methodologies to assess their effects. To this end, the group uses a multi-parametric approach that combines molecular biology, modelling and informatics, biochemical tools, and population relevant endpoints (e.g. embryonic development bioassays, chronic, partial and full life-cycle tests). The members of EDEC group engaged in MARINER (Miguel Santos, Helena Oliveira, Joana Soares) have been focusing on improving ecological risk assessment of HNS and implementing this at operational level. The EDEC group has been engaged in the development and update of tools (e.g. databases, guidelines) to address the toxicological risk of priority HNS, as a step towards improving preparedness and response to accidental spills, and has been strongly involved in the development of new operational tools that link HNS dispersion models, chemicals and toxicological databases and ecological modelling.
CIIMAR facilities at Matosinhos. Source: TVU.
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.