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Reports - 2012

Experiences from oil spills at the Norwegian coast.(Report from IMR no 23-2012)

Environmental studies were carried out after each of the four largest oil spills from vessels in Norwegian coastal waters: ”Rocknes” in 2004, ”Server” in 2007, ”Full City” in 2009 and ”Godafoss” in 2011. The amount of spilled oil per incident was between 100 and 500 tonnes. The impact of the spills on the environment depended on the affected natural resources, the type and amount of oil spilled, the time of the year and the weather conditions during the incident. The four oil spills consisted mainly of heavy oil, which mixed relatively poorly with the water masses. All the spills occurred close to the coast and led to pollution of the shoreline. Assessments of the consequences for the environment in the littoral zone, seabirds, seafood, sediments and other parameters were carried out. The most detailed studies were carried out after the “Full City” oil spill which contaminated 75 km of the coastline. The report discusses the experience from the incidents and gives some recommendations for how environmental studies should be performed when acute oil spills along the Norwegian coast take place in future.