A special case in oil spill remediation

The introduction of sulphur emission control areas (SECA) and the new regulations MARPOL2020, which set the limits for sulphur content in fuel oil to 0.1 % for SECA and 0.5% for other sea areas outside SECA, has led to the use of higher quality fuel oils with very low sulphur content. This new type of hybrid fuel oil, ultralow-sulphur fuel oil (ULSFO) has been used increasingly both within and outside SECA.

The ultra-low sulphur fuel oils tend to be rich in waxes and have high pour point which affect the dispersibility of the oils at low temperature and presents challenge for removing them from marine environment in cold winter. The parties and countries participating in RemULSFO share the need for more knowledge about the behaviour of ULSFO in cold marine environment, the potential risks in oil spill response as well as suitable remediation strategies.

The project created a well-functioning network to investigate the behaviour of the spilled ultra-low sulphur fuel oil (ULSFO) under marine sub-arctic and Arctic winter conditions and exchange of best practices.
The project produced

  • An evaluation report on the use of dispersant in oil spill combat for the oil HDME 50,
  • Recommendations for developing oil remediation strategies based on risk assessment of the spilled oil for appropriate environment protection authorities and agencies from BEAR cross border countries,
  • A teaching material for educational program

Project: Remediation strategies for ultra-low sulfur fuel oil in winter conditions (RemULSFO)

Lead Partner: SINTEF Narvik A.S.

Other partners: 

  • Northern (Arctic) Federal University named after M.V. Lomonosov
  • Finnish Environment Institute SYKE, Marine Research Centre

Basic information about the project in KEEP database