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Operational cooperation

Here you can read about which state agencies the Norwegian Coastal Administration cooperates with to ensure preparedness against acute pollution.

The Norwegian Coastal Administration is responsible for ensuring that the state preparedness for acute pollution is dimensioned and adapted to the environmental risk in force at any given time. To carry out this task, NCA is dependent on assistance and cooperation from several state agencies. This operational cooperation is regulated in agreements and instructions, which clearly state a role and responsibility relationship between NCA and our cooperation partners. In order to make this collaboration work, annual competence-building activities (training, courses and exercises) are carried out between the parties. The most important collaboration agreements that ensure good operational collaboration are briefly described below.

State agencies

The Norwegian Armed Forces

In the event of unwanted incidents, and in the event of government actions against acute pollution, the Norwegian Coastal Administration may request assistance from the Armed Forces. Several co-operation agreements that regulate the co-operation between NCA and the Armed Forces have been entered, and an overall co-operation agreement signed by the Coastal Director and Chief of the Armed Forces' operational headquarters functions as an "overhang" over current agreements. NCA can, if necessary, request assistance from all the Armed Forces' capacities, from logistics support to assistance from the Home Guard.

Coast Guard

The Coast Guard is NCAs most important resource and collaborator from the Armed Forces. The Coast Guard Act regulates this co-operation. In addition to that, a separate agreement has been entered into between NCA and the Coast Guard, as a supplement to the overall co-operation agreement between the Armed Forces and NCA, and the Coast Guard Act. In this agreement, there is a separate section on adapting the Coast Guard's vessel for oil spill preparedness.

In practice, this means that in the case of newbuildings, conversions or the acquisition of vessels for the Coast Guard, these oil spill response tasks are adapted to the extent possible without this being at the expense of the primary tasks. In addition, the agreement regulates the permanent placement of oil spill response equipment on the vessels. As a result of this point in the agreement, all "new" vessels in the Coast Guard are designed for and equipped with oil spill response capabilities (a total of 12 vessels). New Jan Mayen-class coastguard vessels, which will replace the North Cape class, will all be equipped with oil spill response capabilities in contrast to the current North Cape class. This collaboration involves faster response and mobilization of oil spill response equipment than if the oil spill response equipment had been stored on land. The Coast Guard and NCA share the use of two surveillance aircrafts, together with the Norwegian Oil Spill Prevention Association for operating companies.

In 2020, the Coast Guard and the NCA entered into an agreement on the operational execution of state towing preparedness. As a result of this agreement / collaboration, the Coast Guard added two new tugs, which are a full-fledged part of the Coast Guard. This co-operation strengthens the Coast Guard's ability to carry out its primary tasks, at the same time as the Coast Guard's accessibility for other state actors is increased.

The Norwegian Environment Agency

The Norwegian Environment Agency is the pollution authority and sets requirements for pollution preparedness for companies, including the petroleum industry. NCA and the Norwegian Environment Agency have a co-operation agreement that describes the relationship between the two as a state pollution authority. The Norwegian Environment Agency contributes with environmental expertise in government actions against acute pollution, and heads an advisory group for NCA.

The Norwegian Directorate for Civil Protection (DSB)

The co-operation agreement between NCA and DSB regulates access to the Civil Defence's resources and capacities in the event of state actions against acute pollution. DSB is also the professional authority for the Norwegian Fire Brigade and the country's fire service, which forms the backbone of local and regional pollution preparedness in Norway. NCA, DSB, NOFO and the Norwegian Environment Agency are collaborating on a National Curriculum in dealing with acute pollution. DSB, the Norwegian Environment Agency and NCA are also collaborating on the establishment of a Unified Management System (ELS) which describes the recommended organization in the event of major, undesirable incidents.

Petroleum Safety Authority Norway

The co-operation agreement between NCA and the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway describes the relationship of authority and responsibility between the agencies in the event of acute pollution incidents at operating companies on the Norwegian continental shelf. An annual exercise and meeting between the agencies is carried out.

The Joint Rescue Coordination Centres (JRCC)

Life and health will always take precedence over environmental protection. Many government actions against acute pollution start as a rescue operation led by JRCC. When the rescue operation is completed, JRCC hands over the handling of the incident to NCA. In order to take care of this transition in a good way, the NCA and JRCC conduct frequent meetings and exercises where this transition is a topic.

Norwegian Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority (DSA)

The co-operation agreement between NCA and DSA describes the co-operation between the agencies on reporting / monitoring and in the event of incidents that involve a risk of radioactive contamination. For example, detectors for radioactive radiation have been deployed in the NCA surveillance aircraft and in our drones operated by the Coast Guard.

Norwegian Maritime Authority

NCA has an agreement with the Norwegian Maritime Authority on access to maritime expertise / assistance in the event of pollution incidents / government actions. This agreement is exercised annually. All undesirable incidents with ships along the coast of Norway are reported and exchanged between the agencies. NCA's and the Norwegian Maritime Directorate's emergency response scheme has a daily dialogue, and carries out weekly summaries / deliveries of incoming cases in the respective duty schemes. The Norwegian Maritime Directorate collaborates with the NCA, the Coast Guard and DSA on the use of NCA's drones for the detection of sulfur gases from ships.

Private agencies

The Norwegian Clean Seas Association for Operating Companies (NOFO)

NOFO is the petroleum industry's operational emergency preparedness agency on the Norwegian continental shelf. Through the Pollution Control Act, NCA has powers to demand assistance from relevant agencies, including NOFO. NOFO and NCA collaborate on research, development and innovation, aircraft monitoring and the implementation of joint training, courses and exercises.

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