Guyana’s Oil Spill Contingency Plan is taking much longer to finalize as it requires a lot of technical work says Energy Department Head, Dr. Mark Bynoe.
The official noted that the Civil Defense Commission (CDC) is responsible for preparing the final document but the Department has been lending a helping hand when it comes to technical assistance. He said, too, that the Department has been making efforts to point the CDC in the direction of other firms which can provide the expertise needed.
Dr. Bynoe said, “We have advanced work but we continue to require further assistance. We had a workshop not so long ago that aimed at enhancing the risk management framework under which that plan would be couched. We have also engaged the US embassy to see what support they can provide through the US State Department, the US Coast Guards and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) which has years of experience in this field.”
Adding to this was Government’s Advisor on Petroleum, Matthew Wilks. The official said that the Energy Department takes oil spill response very seriously. He said it is for this reason that one of the many conditions for the approval of the Liza Phase Two Permit was for the operator to have a worse case response plan in place.
Wilks added, “This came out after the review of the Field Development Plan for the Liza Phase Two Project by Bayphase Consultancy. They recommended that in the event of a worst-case scenario, there can be a response plan in five days and that was a very important finding which we have hardcoded into the Liza Phase Two Permit.”
It is now well over a year since Guyana is trying to get its National Oil Spill Contingency Plan in order.