Final discussion and concluding remarks
Sula , Volume 5 - Issue 5 p. 48- 50
Summarized by J.A. van Franeker. Concluded was, that the sampling of oil (or rather ’substances’) from feathers and beaches is a valuable way of tracing and monitoring sources of pollution. There was a general feeling that oil sampling could improve future Beached Bird Surveys (BBS) to a greater extent than nowadays and several participants suggested to expand the oil sampling project (now Netherlands, Germany and Denmark) with participants from other countries (CJC, HS, MLT). It was recommended that sampling methods were improved to enhance the possibilities for statistical analysis (representativity), and that any sampling programme should be embedded in an international programme for BBS. It was noted, that in order to obtain a maximum effect in policy decisions or in order to secure fundings of further joint projects on BBS and oil sampling, politicians (e.g. the North Sea Task Force) should be informed in time about these efforts and should be given results in frequent reports in understandable language (WL, BW). MLT asked for better definition of the question behind these programmes, but concluded that the Dutch, German and Danish cooperation in analyzing oil on beached birds seemed to give satisfactory results. CJC preferred to have one backing institution for analysis and (international) coordination. JD concluded that future funding is needed. TK remarked that the possibilities for the identification of oil depends of the type of oil. Only crude oils can be identified easily, while half of the observed slicks concerned fuel oil discharges, which are unidentifiable. Half of the shipping movements along the Dutch coast is just passing by. Only a combination of several aspects makes proof useful in court. In conclusion, Germany, Denmark and Netherland will continue their cooperation (CJC, JD, HS). Belgium and Norway have expressed their wish to join the programme and await further information (AF, CJ). The situation in Shetland is different, but MH showed his interest. The investigations of the effects on seabirds by non-mineral oils need further study and discussion (CJC). In case of non-mineral oil a large (random) sample is needed to make a prediction about seabird mortality caused by non-mineral oil. Because the discharge of non-mineral oil is legal, this problem must be solved (MLT). Sampling techniques, and methods of random sampling, should indeed be improved and this will require a technical workshop on these matters (CJC). The North Sea Directorate is certainly interested and would like to be involved in a sampling project for non-mineral oils (MB, TK). The Toxicological Department of the Veterinary Institute is very interested, but unfortunately it may have to close down (RSB). The result of all our efforts should mean a change of the law or regulation rather than just figures and data (MLT).
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