The risk of oil spills is an ongoing societal concern. Whereas several decision support systems exist for predicting the fate and drift of spilled oil, there is a lack of accurate models for assessing the amount of oil spilled and its temporal evolution. In order to close this gap, this paper presents an online platform for the fast assessment of tanker grounding accidents in terms of structural damage and time-dependent amount of spilled cargo oil. The simulation platform consists of the definition of accidental scenarios; the assessment of the grounding damage and the prediction of the time-dependent oil spill size. The performance of this integrated online simulation environment is exemplified through illustrative case studies representing two plausible accidental grounding scenarios in the Gulf of Finland: one resulting in oil spill of about 50?t, while in the other the inner hull remained intact and no spill occurred.
The growth of maritime oil transportation in the Gulf of Finland (GoF), North-Eastern Baltic Sea, increases environmental risks by increasing the probability of oil accidents. By integrating the work of a multidisciplinary research team and information from several sources, we have developed a probabilistic risk assessment application that considers the likely future development of maritime traffic and oil transportation in the area and the resulting risk of environmental pollution. This metamodel is used to compare the effects of two preventative management actions on the tanker collision probabilities and the consequent risk. The resulting risk is evaluated from four different perspectives. Bayesian networks enable large amounts of information about causalities to be integrated and utilized in probabilistic inference. Compared with the baseline period of 2007-2008, the worst-case scenario is that the risk level increases 4-fold by the year 2015. The management measures are evaluated and found to decrease the risk by 4-13%, but the utility gained by their joint implementation would be less than the sum of their independent effects. In addition to the results concerning the varying risk levels, the application provides interesting information about the relationships between the different elements of the system.
We investigate effects of 2000-2050 emissions and climate changes on the atmospheric transport of three polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs): phenanthrene (PHE), pyrene (PYR), and benzo[a]pyrene (BaP). We use the GEOS-Chem model coupled to meteorology from a general circulation model and focus on impacts to northern hemisphere midlatitudes and the Arctic. We project declines in anthropogenic emissions (up to 20%) and concentrations (up to 37%), with particle-bound PAHs declining more, and greater declines in midlatitudes versus the Arctic. Climate change causes relatively minor increases in midlatitude concentrations for the more volatile PHE and PYR (up to 4%) and decreases (3%) for particle-bound BaP. In the Arctic, all PAHs decline slightly under future climate (up to 2%). Overall, we observe a small 2050 "climate penalty" for volatile PAHs and "climate benefit" for particle-bound PAHs. The degree of penalty or benefit depends on competition between deposition and surface-to-air fluxes of previously deposited PAHs. Particles and temperature have greater impacts on future transport than oxidants, with particle changes alone accounting for 15% of BaP decline under 2050 emissions. Higher temperatures drive increasing surface-to-air fluxes that cause PHE and PYR climate penalties. Simulations suggest ratios of more-to-less volatile species can be used to diagnose signals of climate versus emissions and that these signals are best observed in the Arctic.
Arctic shipping is on the rise, leading to increased concern over the potential environmental impacts. To better understand the magnitude of influence to the Arctic environment, detailed modelling of emissions and environmental risks are essential. This paper describes a framework for environmental accounting. A cornerstone in the framework is the use of Automatic Identification System (AIS) ship tracking data from satellites. When merged with ship registers and other data sources, it enables unprecedented accuracy in modelling and geographical allocation of emissions and discharges. This paper presents results using two of the models in the framework; emissions of black carbon (BC) in the Arctic, which is of particular concern for climate change, and; bunker fuels and wet bulk carriage in the Arctic, of particular concern for oil spill to the environment. Using the framework, a detailed footprint from Arctic shipping with regards to operational emissions and potential discharges is established.
Transport affects climate directly and indirectly through mechanisms that cause both warming and cooling of climate, and the effects operate on very different timescales. We calculate climate responses in terms of global mean temperature and find large differences between the transport sectors with respect to the size and mix of short- and long-lived effects, and even the sign of the temperature response. For year 2000 emissions, road transport has the largest effect on global mean temperature. After 20 and 100 years the response in net temperature is 7 and 6 times higher, respectively, than for aviation. Aviation and shipping have strong but quite uncertain short-lived warming and cooling effects, respectively, that dominate during the first decades after the emissions. For shipping the net cooling during the first 4 decades is due to emissions of SO(2) and NOx. On a longer timescale, the current emissions from shipping cause net warming due to the persistence of the CO(2) perturbation. If emissions stay constant at 2000 levels, the warming effect from road transport will continue to increase and will be almost 4 times larger than that of aviation by the end of the century.
Scenarios for shipping traffic in the Gulf of Bothnia (GoB) by 2030 are described in order to identify the main factors that should be taken into account when preparing a Maritime Spatial Plan (MSP) for the area. The application of future research methodology to planning of marine areas was also assessed. The methods include applying existing large scale quantitative scenarios for maritime traffic in the GoB and using real-time Delphi in which an expert group discussed different factors contributing to future maritime traffic in the GoB to find out the probability and significance of the factors having an impact on maritime traffic. MSP was tested on transnational scale in the Bothnian sea area as a pilot project.
The water exchange of the Baltic coastal zone is characterized by its seasonally varying regimes. In the safety assessment of a potential repository for spent nuclear fuel, it is important to assess the consequences of a hypothetical leak of radionuclides through the seabed into a waterborne transport phase. In particular, estimates of the associated residence times in the near-shore coastal zone are of interest. There are several methods to quantify such measures, of which three are presented here. Using the coastal location of Forsmark (Sweden) as an example, methods based on passive tracers, particle trajectories, and the average age distribution of exogeneous water parcels are compared for a representative one-year cycle. Tracer-based methods can simulate diffusivity more realistically than the other methods. Trajectory-based methods can handle Lagrangian dispersion processes due to advection but neglect diffusion on the sub-grid scale. The method based on the concept of average age (AvA) of exogeneous water can include all such sources simultaneously not only boundary water bodies but also various (fresh)-water discharges. Due to the inclusion of sub-grid diffusion this method gives a smoother measure of the water renewal. It is shown that backward in time trajectories and AvA-times are basically equipollent methods, yielding correlated results within the limits set by the diffusivity.
The objective of this study was to find a model to describe the relationship between the occurrence of pleural plaques and exposure to asbestos. A simple model based on the cumulative exposure was postulated and empirically tested on shipyard workers occupationally exposed to asbestos. Exposure time was used to approximate the cumulative dose. It was found that the incidence of pleural plaques could be described as K(t-w)a where 't' is time since onset of exposure; 'K' is a constant that would depend on the level of asbestos exposure; 'w' is a latency period and was around 13 years; 'a' is a constant that was 0.4. In subgroups of the workers, i.e. plumbers, fitters and platers, 'a' was 0.4, 0.6 and 0.2 respectively.
Wildlife Conservation Society Canada, 169 Titanium Way, Whitehorse, Yukon Territory Y1A 0E9, Canada; Department of Biology, University of Victoria, 3800 Finnerty Rd, Victoria, British Columbia V8P 5C2, Canada.
As the Arctic warms and sea ice decreases, increased shipping will lead to higher ambient noise levels in the Arctic Ocean. Arctic marine mammals are vulnerable to increased noise because they use sound to survive and likely evolved in a relatively quiet soundscape. We model vessel noise propagation in the proposed western Canadian Arctic shipping corridor in order to examine impacts on marine mammals and marine protected areas (MPAs). Our model predicts that loud vessels are audible underwater when >100km away, could affect marine mammal behaviour when within 2km for icebreakers vessels, and as far as 52km for tankers. This vessel noise could have substantial impacts on marine mammals during migration and in MPAs. We suggest that locating the corridor farther north, use of marine mammal observers on vessels, and the reduction of vessel speed would help to reduce this impact.
Winter navigation is a complex but common operation in north-European sea areas. In Finnish waters, the smooth flow of maritime traffic and safety of vessel navigation during the winter period are managed through the Finnish-Swedish winter navigation system (FSWNS). This article focuses on accident risks in winter navigation operations, beginning with a brief outline of the FSWNS. The study analyses a hazard identification model of winter navigation and reviews accident data extracted from four winter periods. These are adopted as a basis for visualizing the risks in winter navigation operations. The results reveal that experts consider ship independent navigation in ice conditions the most complex navigational operation, which is confirmed by accident data analysis showing that the operation constitutes the type of navigation with the highest number of accidents reported. The severity of the accidents during winter navigation is mainly categorized as less serious. Collision is the most typical accident in ice navigation and general cargo the type of vessel most frequently involved in these accidents. Consolidated ice, ice ridges and ice thickness between 15 and 40cm represent the most common ice conditions in which accidents occur. Thus, the analysis presented in this article establishes the key elements for identifying the operation types which would benefit most from further safety engineering and safety or risk management development.