|National Oil Spill Contingency Plan (NOSCP)
|Gambia Maritime Administration
The Republic of The Gambia has in recent years made considerable progress in establishing the conditions necessary to respond to oil spills. This has involved; establishing a competent authority to deal with marine incidents, the ratification of relevant International Agreements, and their subsequent implementation which is ongoing.
The vehicle of implementation is through the maritime strategy, of which a stated purpose to create the mechanisms for the protection and conservation of biodiversity and marine and coastal resources against oil pollution. Under these drivers, The Gambia has been working to strengthen its national capacities through the process of preparing a National Oil Spill Contingency Plan (NOSCP). The general objective is to establish a mechanism to respond to situations of spills of oil and other hazardous substances, or situations of imminent threat of such spills, to define the responsibilities of the intervening entities and to establish the competencies of the authorities responsible for carrying out the tasks.
To accelerate this work, in 2022 The Gambia formally requested assistance from the GI WACAF for continued development of its NOSCP. Finalisation of this document for adoption is an integral component in the implementation of the International Convention on Oil Pollution Preparedness, Response and Cooperation (OPRC ’90), which was ratified by the Gambia in 2013.
The request for assistance from The Gambia has resulted in the current Project which has been jointly funded between GI WACAF and The Regional Partnership for the Conservation of the Coastal and Marine Zone (PRCM). The goal is to ensure a case and country-specific approach to the formulation of a response strategy and operational plan that complements existing national processes and frameworks and results in a NOSCP that is ultimately approved and formally adopted by the Country.
This site visit was one of the activities under the Project. Between 9th and 16th June 2023, the GI WACAF project coordinator and Marittima’s technical consultant were in The Gambia as part of the joint IGI WACAF-PRCM Project to provide technical assistance to The Gambia in the development of their National Oil Spill Contingency Plan (NOSCP).
This was the first of two visits planned under the scope of the Project, and it is anticipated that the second visit will take place in September 2023.
The visit in June was intended as an initial fact-finding mission to meet relevant stakeholders, request necessary data and documents from key stakeholders and become familiar with existing emergency response processes and oil spill response-related capacity. A field-based component of the Mission was intended to capture an overview of key environmental and socioeconomic sensitivities, capture an operationally-relevant snapshot and other context-specific information.