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  • C-CORE 2.4 Detection and monitoring of pollutant discharges


 Detection and monitoring of pollutant discharges

Challenge ID



Detection and monitoring of pollutant discharges

Challenge originator:


General Description


What data/products do you use?

Models, aerial surveillance, satellite imagery, drifter buoys, in situ monitoring at platforms



When do you use this kind of dataset?

To aid in trajectory modeling, spill response and protection of important ecological and archeological areas


Monitor coastal and offshore oil pollution to assess the impact of pollution on the marine environment


Monitor discharges of cement, cuttings and mud


Monitoring of pollution arising from gas flaring

What are your actual limitations and do you have a work around? 

Validations of trajectory models is difficult and in case of a spill in situ monitoring is limited to aerial surveillance, weather limitations of current technology

Needs and expectations on EO data

High resolution imagery capable of detecting and tracking slicks and plumes of discharged materials

Challenge classification


Pre license










Geographic context/ restrictions

All Regions

Topographic classification / Offshore classification


Activity impacted/concerned

Operational, response capability enhancement

Technology Urgency

Short term (2-5 years)

Information requirements


Update frequency

1-6 h during time of discharge

Temporal resolution

1-6 h during time of discharge

Spatial resolution


Data quality


Data Coverage and extent


Example format

High resolution image


As close to real-time as possible

Existing standards

ERT Scotland. 2008. Third strategic environmental assessment for oil and gas activity in Ireland’s offshore Atlantic waters: IOSEA3 Rockall Basin. Prepared for Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources


Galil B. and Herut B. 2011. Marine environmental issues of deep-sea exploration and exploitation activities (oil and gas) off the coast of Israel. IOLR Report H15/2012.


RPS Energy.  2009.  Environmental Impact Assessment for Offshore Drilling The Falkland Islands. Report prepared for Rockhopper Exploration PLC.


Huang, Weigen, Fu, Bin.  2002. Remote Sensing for Coastal Area Management. Laboratory of Ocean Dynamic Processes and Satellite Oceanography Second Institute of Oceanography State Oceanic Administration Hangzhou, People’s Republic of China in China. Coastal Management, 30:271–276, 2002.; UNEP, 2005. Wilkinson, C., DeVantier, L., Talaue-McManus, L., Lawrence, D. and D. Souter. South China Sea, GIWA Regional assessment 54. University of Kalmar, Kalmar, Sweden.


BOBLME (2011) Country report on pollution – Myanmar. BOBLME-2011-Ecology-13; Ramamurthy, V.D. and J. Sreenivasan.  1983.  Sources of Oil Pollution along the Indian Coasts of Arabian Sea, Bay of Bengal Indian Ocean, and its Impact on Commercial Fisheries.  Anales Del Instituto de Ciencias del Mar Y Limnología.


Akpomuvie, Orhioghene, Benedict. 2011. Tragedy of Commons: Analysis of Oil Spillage, Gas Flaring and Sustainable Development of the Niger Delta of Nigeria. Journal of Sustainable Development. Vol. 4, No. 2.


IPIECA publications on oil spill avoidance, preparedness response and best practices (




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