REMPEC Promotes Spill Prevention and Response in Western Mediterranean
Response plans are essential to ensure reliable national and sub-regional systems for preparedness and response, trained personnel, basic equipment and contingency plans for combating marine pollution incidents.
The Regional Marine Pollution Emergency Response Centre for the Mediterranean Sea (REMPEC) , the International Maritime Organization (IMO) -administered pollution emergency response centre in the Mediterranean, facilitated the organization of a meeting of national authorities involved in the contingency plan for the Western Mediterraean.
The Fifth Meeting of the competent national authorities in charge of the implementation of the Sub-Regional Contingency Plan between Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia for the Preparation for and the Response to Marine Pollution from Ships for the South-Western Mediterranean was held in Algiers, Algeria (27-28 November).
Opening the meeting, Mrs Fatma Zohra Zerouati, Minister of Environment and Renewable Energy of Algeria, underlined the need to organize high level sub-regional meetings on an annual basis to ensure the continuous commitment of the countries involved in the implementation of the regional plan.
The Regional Marine Pollution Emergency Response Centre for the Mediterranean Sea (REMPEC) assists Mediterranean coastal States in ratifying, transposing, implementing and enforcing international maritime conventions related to the prevention, preparedness and response to pollution from ships, including IMO’s Convention on Oil Pollution Preparedness and Response (OPRC 90).
An effective regional contingency plan is considered to be the single most important factor which determines the effectiveness and the success of response to marine pollution incidents. The recent meeting falls within REMPEC’s continuous efforts to implement a solid framework for mutual assistance and cooperation in case of marine pollution from ships in the Mediterranean.
The meeting was attended by more than 150 representatives from Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, as well as from REMPEC, UNDP and the United Nations Information Centre.
REMPEC also facilitated further collaboration and exchange of experience between the South-Western Mediterranean Contingency Plan, and the Ramoge Agreement, a similar regional cooperation framework between France, Italy and Monaco (see: which has been in place for more than 40 years.