The TOSCA (Tracking Oil Spills & Coastal Awareness network) project, cofinanced by the European Regional Development fund in the framework of the Med Programme, aims to improve the quality, speed and effectiveness of decision-making process in case of marine accidents in the Mediterranean concerning oil spill pollution and search and rescue (SAR) operations.
To answer this objective, the following specific objectives will be met during the project:
Through the construction of an observational network, based on state of the art technology (HF radars and drifters), the project will provide real-time observations and forecasts of the marine environmental conditions in the Western and Eastern part of the Mediterranean Sea. The system will be installed and assessed in five test sites on the coastal areas of oil spill outlets (Eastern Mediterranean) and on high traffic areas (Western Mediterranean). The use of state of the art technology will provide more accurate oil spill tracking and trajectory forecasts.
Gathered data will be combined in a useful decision support tool for authorities in charge of marine emergency response. Based on the needs of local authorities around the Mediterranean, the system will be implemented on a territorial scale and will provide critical information to support decision-making process in case of maritime accident (objects and oil spill tracking and trajectories, ocean current and dispersion maps, mapping of risk areas, vulnerability maps...)
The network will be used to implement action plans in collaboration with local authorities as well as a common scientific strategy in cooperation with policy makers to provide immediate response, mitigation and long term management of oil spill pollution and SAR operations in case of marine accidents.
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