The pollution of the Gulf of Mexico following the tragic Deepwater Horizon disaster (2010) required the use of "classic" response techniques such as containment/recovery and dispersant use. The very specific characteristics of this spill, caused by a blowout, enabled the use of a technique known as in situ burning, as yet never used on such a scale.
411 burns were carried out, removing over 40,000 m3 of oil, i.e. approximately 5% of the total quantity of oil released. Since then, this controversial technique has been the focus of much research and experimentation to better understand how it works and the impact it has on the environment.
The response to this spill also involved the deployment of 2,800 km of sorbent booms, mainly for shoreline protection. This was the second time, after the Hebei Spirit oil tanker incident (2007), that floating sorbents, normally designed to assist in recovery and shoreline clean-up operations, were used on such a scale.
Cedre’s Strategic Committee therefore chose the theme of in situ burning and other alternative techniques for the 20th Cedre Information Day. We have asked our French and foreign partners to address the issues of in situ burning, bioremediation, sorbents and other alternative techniques from a range of scientific, technical and operational angles, which should, we hope, give rise to interesting discussions.
Morning, Chairman: M. Périé, Président du Comité Stratégique du Cedre
A review of in situ burning by Ronan Jézéquel, Cedre
The atmospheric impact of in situ burning by Laurence Rouil, Ineris
The use of sorbents for recovery by Stéphane le Floch and Pascale Le Guerroué, Cedre
Bioremediation by Ronan Jézéquel, Cedre
Afternoon, Chairman: M. Schultz, Sous-directeur du littoral et des milieux marins, MEDDE
Enhancement of biodegradation techniques through the Kill Spill project by Nicolas Kalogerakis, Technical University of Crete
Implementation of burning by the oil industry by Matthiew Cameron, OSRL
ITOPF’s vision of alternative techniques by Dr Annabelle Nicolas-Kopec, ITOPF