The U.S. Coast Guard is seeking public comment on the proposed decommissioning of their oil spill response equipment caches located throughout Alaska

UPDATE: Caches have been funded through September 2016. Please visit Budget cuts threaten spill response equipment in remote Alaska communities for more information.

Original post:

Oil spill cleanup response equipment is pre-positioned in remote areas to help local communities mount an early response to pollution incidents in order to minimize environmental damage.  The justification for their removal is mostly due to the cost of maintaining this equipment because of the remote location of many of the sites.  Another justification is that many of the caches are co-located with other oil spill response equipment owned by private oil spill response organizations or the State of Alaska.  More information on the specific locations of the USCG Alaska-based equipment caches, including a complete inventory of equipment at each location, can be found at:

D17 District Response Advisory Team (DRAT)

The council strongly supports retaining the USCG equipment caches in our region, including Chenega Bay, Cordova, Valdez, Port Graham, Seward, Kodiak, Homer and Kenai.  Equipment caches in locations outside our region are equally important for the same reasons, and span from the Pribilof Islands to Unalaska all the way down to Ketchikan (see U.S. Coast Guard map with specific locations). 

Read moreThe U.S. Coast Guard is seeking public comment on the proposed decommissioning of their oil spill response equipment caches located throughout Alaska

Council weighs in on terminal contingency plan changes

By LINDA SWISS
Council Project Manager

Valdez Marine Terminal
Oil storage tanks have a “secondary containment” system surrounding them that would help keep oil out of the environment if a spill from the tanks should occur. The containment system has a liner that would prevent oil from seeping through to the ground. The council recommends routine inspections to make sure the liner remains intact.

The oil spill contingency plan for the Valdez Marine Terminal is undergoing an update, and the council recently had an opportunity to comment on the changes.

The plan, known officially as the Valdez Marine Terminal Oil Discharge Prevention and Contingency Plan, contains detailed information about how an oil spill at the terminal can be contained and cleaned up, and ways to prevent an oil spill in the first place.

By law, these plans are required to be reviewed and updated every five years, and these changes are a part of that regular cycle.

Read moreCouncil weighs in on terminal contingency plan changes

Prince William Sound spill contingency plans under review

By LINDA SWISS
Council Project Manager

The council participates in various workgroups tasked with updating the Prince William Sound Subarea Plan, and recently submitted comments on proposed changes to the plan. The last update to the subarea plan was completed in 2005.

Access to current information is critical in the early hours of spill response. The council recommended that the revised plan contain the most current information on web links; resources such as communications, equipment, facilities and support personnel; sensitive areas; community information; and wildlife impacted.

Read morePrince William Sound spill contingency plans under review

Your input is needed on Prince William Sound oil spill contingency plans!

The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation, U.S. Coast Guard, and the Environmental Protection Agency are seeking public input for proposed changes to the Prince William Sound Subarea Contingency Plan for Oil and Hazardous Substance Spills and Releases.

These subarea plans supplement the statewide oil spill contingency plan, known as the “Unified Plan,” by concentrating on issues and provisions specific to Prince William Sound. The current plan for Prince William Sound can be found on the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation’s website.

Read moreYour input is needed on Prince William Sound oil spill contingency plans!

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