The oil slick that formed after the spill soon began to change physically and chemically. A fraction the lighter compounds is evaporated and the remaining of the toxic oil spread out from the main slick as fingers of a very thin iridescent sheen on the surface of the water. This layer of sheen can be deadly to seabirds and other marine life.
The Gulf of Mexico leak was a wake-up call and raise world’ s awareness about the secure energy harnessing from deep-sea oil resources.
Two major oil catastrophes occurred in the US, Exxon Valdez in 1989 and BP’s Deepwater Horizon in 2010, bring about an important environmental concern.
Generally, when an oil spill occurs, the oil immediately forms large slicks, which float on the water’s surface.
In Gulf of Mexico accident oil spill flowed for three months, becoming the largest accidental marine oil spill in the history of the petroleum industry.
In addition to chemicals, ecologists also use bacteria, which thrive on the compounds in oil to digest it and render it less harmful.
Takes months to clean up and years or decades for ecosystems to recover.
Mediterranean Sea is placed among the high-risk seas where large oil-spills (above seven tonnes per spill) are reported. Large accidental oil spills originated from tankers, combined carriers and barges account for about 10–15 per cent of the total oil that enters the ocean world-wide every year.
Oil spills affect marine life like filter feeders by concentrating in the flesh of these animals. Clams, mussels, and oysters may quickly accumulate toxins which can kill the animals or be passed on along the food chain.
The oil remains floating on the surface of the water, and starts to disperse, forming a very thin film, which can cover large areas of water. Then the floating oil forms dispersions (small oil droplets in the water column) and emulsions (larger droplets of oil-in-water or water-in-oil).

Upcoming Events

  • M14 - Athens Seminar (moved from M9)
  • M15 - Jordan Seminar
  • M18 - Cyprus Seminar
  • M21 - Israel Seminar
  • M16 - Jordan workshop (moved from M11)
  • M22 - Athens seminar
  • M24 - Cyprus Final Conference

The RAOP-MED Project at a Glance...

*From the ancient times, the Mediterranean Sea has been an important route for merchants and travellers that allowed for trade and cultural exchange between emergent peoples not only for its twenty-two coastal states but for the global community as well. However, this source of prosperity, the Mediterranean Sea, is facing today great challenges and environmental threats with the pollution, largely due to the shipping operations and activities. It is worth mentioning, that, today, more than 30% of all international sea-borne trade by volume originates from or directed to Mediterranean ports or passing through its waters, and nearly 25% of the world's sea-transported oil transits Mediterranean Sea.

>RAOP-MED project aims to offer a holistic study on the risks associated with the exploitation and exploration of the continental shelf and seabed, that includes prevention, early detection and control of the oil spill, re-organisation and re-distribution of the resources available for efficient and accurate combat of the oil spill at the early stages and, furthermore, to raise awareness of the possible consequences of such an incident in financial, environmental and social level.

Project Work Packages

The overall strategy of RAOP-MED work plan can be seen through 8 Work Packages in which the different aims and objectives of the project are addressed in a coherent manner.

WP1 - Management and Coordination

MC7Ensures the effective coordination and management as well as the quality and timely delivery of all the quantifiable outputs (deliverables) of the RAOP-MED project.

Read more on Work Package 1: Management and Coordination

WP2 - Communication

Com3Ensures that RAOP-MED results will be disseminated in the wider community and all the relevant stakeholders.

Read more on Work Package 2: Communication

WP3 - Capitalisation of the Results

capitDemonstrate the concepts and methodologies developed in RAOP-MED to all relevant stakeholders, maximize the impacts of networking events, create synergies with projects and/or initiatives at national level and identify opportunities for collaboration with projects within ENPI CBC MED and MED.

Read more on Work Package 3: Capitalisation of the Results

WP4 - Identification of High Risk Areas

risk area2Is the work package where there will be a collection of data related to ship traffic and oil transport in the South East Mediterranean sea. The analysis of maritime traffic through the Automated Identification System (AIS) in conjunction with the oil transport data will allow the identification of High Risk areas for Oil Spill incidents/releases.

Read more on Work Package 4: Identification of High Risk Areas

WP5 - Probability and Oil Spill Evaluation

MC6Is a continuation of WP4 and goes in tandem with WP6 (Sensitivity Mapping) for the Impact Damage Assessment to be developed within WP7. Within WP5 the probability of occurrence of an Oil Spill as well as the Oil Spill Evaluation, in terms of size and type, are being evaluated.

Read more on Work Package 5: Probability and Oil Spill Evaluation

WP6 - Sensitivity Mapping

MC1Is the WP where the Sensitivity Mapping for the whole South-East Mediterranean will be developed. The Sensitivity Mapping will take into consideration environmental as well as socio-economic parameters.

Read more on Work Package 6: Sensitivity Mapping

WP7 - Impact Damage Assessment

MC8Aims in evaluating the consequences of an Oil Spill release anywhere in the South East Mediterranean. To this extent, a comprehensive Impact Damage Assessment will be developed based on the predictions of a world-wide known and validated Oil Spill forecasting model (MEDSLINK).

Read more on Work Package 7: Impact Damage Assessment

WP8 - Redistribution of Resources and Contingency Planning

distribution2Aims in capitalizing on the outcomes from the Impact Damage Assessment and suggest measures for a better distribution of the resources (humans and equipment) in the participating countries as well as on improving existing Emergency Contingency plans in the South-East Mediterranean.

Read more on Work Package 8: Redistribution of Resources and Contingency Planning

RAOP-MED Project Administration HQ
Staff Hours: Mon - Fri 8am - 6pm

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