University of Oulu

Pavlov, V., Aguiar, V. C. M. de, Hole, L. R., & Pongrácz, E. (2021). A 30-Year Probability Map for Oil Spill Trajectories in the Barents Sea to Assess Potential Environmental and Socio-Economic Threats. Resources, 11(1), 1.

A 30-year probability map for oil spill trajectories in the Barents Sea to assess potential environmental and socio-economic threats

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Author: Pavlov, Victor1; de Aguiar, Victor Cesar Martins2; Hole, Lars Robert3;
Organizations: 1Water, Energy and Environmental Engineering Research Unit, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 4300, FI-90014 Oulu, Finland
2Department of Physics and Technology, UiT The Arctic University of Norway, N-9037 Tromso, Norway
3Oceanography and Marine Meteorology, Norwegian Meteorological Institute, P.O. Box 7800, N-5020 Bergen, Norway
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 3 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2022
Publish Date: 2022-05-17


Increasing exploration and exploitation activity in the Arctic Ocean has intensified maritime traffic in the Barents Sea. Due to the sparse population and insufficient oil spill response infrastructure on the extensive Barents Sea shoreline, it is necessary to address the possibility of offshore accidents and study hazards to the local environment and its resources. Simulations of surface oil spills were conducted in south-east of the Barents Sea to identify oil pollution trajectories. The objective of this research was to focus on one geographical location, which lies along popular maritime routes and also borders with sensitive ecological marine and terrestrial areas. As a sample of traditional heavy bunker oil, IFO-180LS (2014) was selected for the study of oil spills and used for the 30-year simulations. The second oil case was medium oil type: Volve (2006)—to give a broader picture for oil spill accident scenarios. Simulations for four annual seasons were run with the open source OpenDrift modelling tool using oceanographic and atmospheric data from the period of 1988–2018. The modelling produced a 30-year probability map, which was overlapped with environmental data of the area to discuss likely impacts to local marine ecosystems, applicable oil spill response tools and favourable shipping seasons. Based on available data regarding the environmental and socio-economic baselines of the studied region, we recommend to address potential threats to marine resources and local communities in more detail in a separate study.

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Series: Resources
ISSN: 2079-9276
ISSN-E: 2079-9276
ISSN-L: 2079-9276
Volume: 11
Issue: 1
Article number: 1
DOI: 10.3390/resources11010001
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 1172 Environmental sciences
Funding: This research was funded by Northern Periphery and Arctic Programme 2014–2020.
Copyright information: © 2021 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (