Oil Pollution – Is the Mediterranean ready?

The Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean, under the auspices of the Italian Parliament, and in collaboration with the Office of the Prime Minister of Italy - Department of Civil Protection, will be organising on 18 May 2011, in Rome, the Conference entitled ‘Oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico: is the Mediterranean ready?
The event falls under the framework of the Special Task Force on Environment within PAM’s 2nd Standing Committee on Economic, Social and Environmental Cooperation, presided by Senator Francesco Maria Amoruso (Italy). PAM had been requested by the Union of the Mediterranean, following consultations with Italian Foreign Minister, Hon. Franco Frattini, to dedicate particular attention to this environmental threat, which is of vital importance to the Mediterranean Sea, as a result of oil related activities, as well as due to the critical mass of oil products transported in the basin.
The conference will be attended by major actors involved both from the institutional side and from the private sector, which have a direct interest in oil resources exploitation and environmental protection issues related to marine pollution. Among the participants, which include a number of MPs from PAM member states, there are the International Ocean Institute (IOI), Ente Nazionale Idrocarburi (ENI), WWF, UN Regional Marine Pollution Emergency Response Centre for the Mediterranean Sea (REMPEC), European Commission - Humanitarian Aid & Civil Protection (ECHO), and the Mediterranean Operational Oceanography Network (MOON).
Lessons learned from the Gulf of Mexico experience, and the level of response and preparedness in the Mediterranean, will be among the major topics discussed during the meeting in Rome. Hon. Nikolaos Nikolopoulos (Greece), PAM Rapporteur on environmental issues will present the results of this Conference in Dubrovnic, Croatia, at the mid-yearly working sessions of the PAM Standing Committees and Special Task Forces.
PAM has already focused its attention on marine pollution, through a detailed report and resolution prepared by the Italian MP, Hon. Angela Napoli, on the dumping of toxic and radioactive waste in the Mediterranean Sea, within the framework of the Special Task Force on Organised Crime, under the 1st Standing Committee on Political and Security related cooperation. This event shows the breadth with which the Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean addresses issues of vital importance to the region, by analyzing the delicate interconnection between the different aspects that might impinge on the general environmental scenario at a regional and international level.

ISSUED ON: 10.05.2011

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