MSRC To Be Fully Operational In 18 Months

A vice president of the Marine Spill Response Corporation (MSRC) recently told the 13th World Petroleum Congress that his organization plans to be fully operational within the next 18 months.

At a session devoted to environment and health matters, G.

Stephen Duca described the mission and structure of MSRC.

Mr. Duca told the gathering that MSRC will operate from five regional response centers, each supported by several strategically placed equipment sites, and will become the nation's largest spill response and cleanup organization.

Funding for MSRC, he said, will come from the Marine Preservation Association (MPA), "an organization comprised of oil companies, pipeline companies, utility companies and the shippers and receivers of oil." He added that MPA will have no control over MSRC operations.

According to Mr. Duca, MSRC's five-year costs for operations, capital equipment, research and development are estimated at more than $900 million.

With regard to his organization's mission, Mr. Duca said that MSRC, under the direction of the U.S. Coast Guard, will provide a best-effort response to cleaning up the spills that are beyond the capacity of the local response organizations. He added that each of the regional centers, which will be located in the New York/New Jersey area, the Miami area of south Florida, in Lake Charles, La., Port Hueneme in southern California, and in the Seattle, Wash., area, is being designed to provide this best effort response to spills roughly the size of the Alaska spill.

Mr. Duca pointed out that under U.S. federal law, the responder to an oil spill has limited immunity. Under some state laws, however, the responder is not provided this limited immunity. He said that MSRC is currently seeking state liability standards that would be similar to those of the federal government because an oil spill responder must act decisively in a dynamic emergency environment.

Other stories from November 1991 issue


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