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ABSTRACT: Development of a Computer-Based Oil Spill Planning and Management Program for the Western Mining Corporation (Petroleum Division) Airlie Concession Area

KETTLE, BRETT T., and ROBERT A. BELL,* Sinclair Knight, Townsville, Australia, and H. GOFF, Western Mining Corporation, Perth, Australia

Western Mining Corporation (Petroleum Division, Australasia) currently operates two leases within the Airlie Concession Area located on the Rowley Shelf some 1,250 km north of Perth. These leases support three important fields--South Pepper, North Heradl, and Chervil--with total daily of production of approximately 1,430 kL.

Marine Bio Logic, a division of Sinclair Knight and Partners, were commissioned by Western Mining Corporation to implement an interactive computer-based oil spill planning and management program. Initially developed for use on the Great Barrier Reef Region of Queensland, the program (called ASAP) is geographically referenced and incorporates natural, built and response logistic data for Airlie Concession Area. It is a detailed and flexible, site-specific spill response and contingency program.

Using ASAP, the spill response coordinator can plot and visually assess the extent and movement, and possible grounding sites of a simulated oil spill. Overlays within the program can be assessed to display infrastructure, wildlife habitats, sensitivity to oil, tenure, or other features of the area. Due to the ease of use of the program and the simplicity of the Macintosh working environment, spills can quickly be plotted to cover a range of scenarios. In a "real time" situation, the spill can be replotted in a manner of minutes. Information from latest site reports can thus be incorporated for improved spill response coordination. Data bases linked to the spill model program provide "real time" tidal data and oil weathering information.

Western Mining's initiative to implement ASAP as an integral part of their OSCP is one of the many moves by industry to self-regulate their impact on sensitive marine resources.


AAPG Search and Discovery Article #91015©1992 AAPG International Conference, Sydney, N.S.W., Australia, August 2-5, 1992 (2009)