Culminating a three-year effort, Marine Pollution Control, in conjunction with the Coast Guard’s Research, Development, Test and Evaluation (RDT&E) program, will participate in an Oil-in-Ice Exercise in St. Ignace, MI, the week of February 18.
The exercise is designed to demonstrate the use of a variety of technologies—from skimmers to fire boom to sonar—and techniques like ice “herding” to help clean up oil in arctic conditions. Additional participants and observers will include personnel from a number of Coast Guard jurisdictions (including the arctic region), other government agencies, and the spill response industry.
The 2013 exercise is similar to last year’s successful demonstration, although this year it will include additional technologies—an autonomous underwater vehicle and an intelligence gathering dirigible, for example—and the ice conditions are expected to be more difficult. Bill Hazel, MPC’s Director of Marine Services, gave a presentation on the 2012 exercise at the recent No Spills Conference in Traverse City. “As the arctic region becomes increasingly important to the country’s strategic interests initiatives such as this Oil-in-Ice demonstration will help ensure that we move forward while continuing to protect the environment,” Hazel said.
Marine Pollution Control is generally regarded as an expert and innovator in spill response and advanced technologies. Founded in 1967 by David Usher, who continues as Chairman, it was the first oil spill cleanup company in the Great Lakes and one of the first in the country.