Annotated Bibliography of Oil Spill Resources

This bibliography gathers nearly 100 academic articles, reports, and books on various oil spills and similar industrial incidents. Topics include oil spill management, monitoring, policy and decision making, and response. Litigation and environmental hazard research is also included.

Akkartal, A., and F. Sunar. 2008. The usage of radar images in oil spill detection. The International Archives of the Photgrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences 37, no. Part B8: 271-76.
Call Number: UZ1128

Abstract: Discharge of oil including with the tanker accidents have the most dangerous and hazardous effects on marine environment. It is specified that annually more than 4.5 million tons of oil based disposals are poured out to the sea worldwide. The main waste source is the ship based operational discharges with an approximate 45 percentage. The world’s 28 petroleum transfer passes through Mediterranean which makes the 50 of all the transfers in Mediterranean as risky and dangerous. Therefore Turkey, with its surrounded coasts and heavy tanker traffic, is under risk of petroleum hazard. An oil spill monitoring and detection system should be used to prevent and interfere immediately. In order to interfere the oil spill, it is important to identify the type, aerial extent, position, (nearest ship position if any), the possibility percentage etc. For this purpose, satellite-based oil pollution monitoring systems are being used to take precautions and even to determine the possible polluter. Today, Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) satellites are the main data sources to detect the oil spills discharged into the sea with sufficient accuracies. In this study, the advantages and disadvantages of using different radar images for oil spill detection in Marmara Sea were investigated.

Anderson, Alison, and Agnes Marhadour. 2007. Slick PR? The media politics of the Prestige oil spill. Science Communication 29, no. 1: 96-115.
Call Number: UZ1127
Abstract: This article examines the different ways in which Spanish, French, and U.K. newspapers framed the Prestige oil spill. In contrast to earlier large oil spills such as the Torrey Canyon, the Internet had a significant influence upon mainstream news coverage and the coordination of protest activities. The findings suggest that the local Spanish press provided the most sustained coverage, and geographic propinquity to the accident was a good predictor of the frequency and intensity of reporting. The regional Spanish press focused upon implications for the local economy rather than the effects on wildlife. In contrast, the sampled national newspapers in Spain, France, and the United Kingdom framed the oil spill in terms of its ecological impacts and the political controversy regarding who was to blame. The implications of these differences are discussed and considered in relation to the globalization of news and the changing politics of risk.

Assilzadeh, Hamid, and Yang Gao. 2010. Designation of an interactive oil spill management system. Disaster Prevention and Management 19, no. 2: 233-42.
Call Number: UZ01118
Abstract: This paper seeks to illustrate designation of a real-time oil spill monitoring and management system using computer system, GIS models, internet and a variety of other technologies. Appropriate models in GIS, together with monitoring technologies and internet-based communication infrastructure, facilitate oil spill early warning, situational analysis, risk analysis and damage analysis in addition to management and disaster response in real-time. The system architect includes command and control module, designed for managing and coordinating oil spill accidents response. The structure also includes an accident data dissemination scheme, through an internet portal which distributes disaster thematic products and facilitates communication between oil spill disaster players and the administration office. The functionality of such a system through its components including database, central repository, disaster models, command and control and communication schemes covers all the stages of spill management before, during, and after an accident. The system acts as a single umbrella of control and administration for efficient and effective oil spill accident management and enhances oil spill accident early warning and alert mechanisms. The system will also enhance decision supports for quick emergency responses and improve real-time communication and information sharing between responsible agencies.

Bardwick, Deborah S. 2000. The American tort system's response to environmental disaster: The Exxon Valdez oil spill as a case study. Stanford Environmental Law Journal 19: 259-91.
Call Number: XZ00097
Abstract: No abstract

Beamish, Thomas D. 2002. Silent Spill: The Organization of an Industrial Crisis. London: MIT Press.
Call Number: U00323
Abstract: No abstract

Birkland, Thomas A. 1997. After Disaster: Agenda Setting, Public Policy, and Focusing Events. Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press.
Call Number: Q00180
Abstract: Using a paradigm of public policy, disasters can be thought of as "focusing events"-sudden calamities that cause citizens and policy makers to pay more attention to a public problem and to press for solutions. In this publication, the author explores how and why some public disasters change political agendas, and, ultimately, public policies. He recounts important successes and failures in the policy process by analyzing the political outcomes of four types of events: earthquakes, hurricanes, oil spills, and nuclear accidents. Using empirical data, he presents a theory of where and when these events will gain attention and how they trigger political reactions

Birkland, Thomas A., and Regina G. Lawrence. 2002. The social and political meaning of the Exxon Valdez oil spill. Spill Science and Technology Bulletin 7, no. 1-2: 17-22.
Call Number: UZ01122
Abstract: This paper argues that the Exxon Valdez oil spill gained so much attention because of its setting in Alaska. Alaska symbolizes for many Americans the wilderness or frontier that has long been part of American thought. At the same time, American national development has largely depended on the discovery and use of the nation’s abundant natural resources. The setting of the Valdez spill in the seemingly pristine waters of Prince William Sound brought the tension between our national identification with wilderness and our national need for further natural resource exploitation into sharp focus. In the aftermath of the spill, a legislative deadlock was passed and the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 was passed. The Valdez accident had longer-term consequences as well, most prominent of which is related to the ongoing debate over whether to open up the coastal plain in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to further development.

Bonnieux, F., and P. Rainelli. 1993. Learning from the Amoco Cadiz oil spill: Damage valuation and court’s ruling. Industrial & Environmental Crisis Quarterly 7, no. 3: 169-88.
Call Number: UZ00911
Abstract: This article presents a discussion of the different economic costs that resulted from the Amoco Cadiz’s oil spill which damaged 200 miles of French coastline in 1978. This case is particularly interesting for several reasons:
I) The Amoco Cadiz is the largest vessel spill in history, over five times the amount spilled by the Exxon Valdez in 1989, and is thus, a reference point.
II) It reveals the difficulties for economists in evaluating natural damage costs since these costs are highly dependent on the assumptions made in order to calculate them, the models used and the scarcity of data available.
III) Since the lawsuits were only settled recently (1992), this case allows for the first longitudinal study of the issues involved in the economic valuation of a massive oil spill.The conclusion, based on previous discussions on the evaluation of the damages by the different parties involved (plaintiffs, defendant, first court and court of appeals), highlights a number of lessons for the damage assessment of disasters.

Browning, Larry D., and Judy C. Shetler. 1992. Communication in crisis, communication in recovery: A postmodern commentary on the Exxon Valdez disaster. International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters 10, no. 3: 477-98.
Call Number: Serials
Abstract: This article is an application of the postmodern characteristics of simultaneity, chaos, unintended consequences, and multiple realities to the Exxon Valdez disaster. After postmodernity is applied to the Exxon Valdez case-study, the changes in contingency planning, prevention, and response that have occurred since 1989, and their implications for the Pacific Rim, are reviewed. The theme of the paper is the use of differences for problem solving in emergencies.

Bushell, Sharon, and Stan Jones. 2009. The Spill: Personal Stories from the Exxon Valdez Disaster. AK: Epicenter Press.
Call Number: U00378
Abstract: This book, published twenty years following the Exxon Valdez oil spill off the Alaska coast, is a compilation of writings by the people who experienced the event. The sixty-two authors which include fishermen, Native villagers, biologists, environmentalists, sociologists, Exxon executives, the governor, mayors, journalists, workers who washed oily rocks and the skipper of the Exxon Valdez recall what they saw, how they reacted, and how they coped. The stories tell of a slow response, the struggle to save the stricken tanker, the often heroic but largely futile efforts to limit the spread of oil and clean the beaches, a loss of fish and wildlife, a crippling blow to the commercial fishing industry, lingering social problems, and a loss of innocence among Alaskans who believed this spill would never happen.

Castanedo, S., J. A. Juanes, R. Medina, A. Puente, F. Fernandez, M. Olabarrieta, and C. Pombo. 2009. Oil spill vulnerability assessment integrating physical, biological and socio-economical aspects: Application to the Cantabrian coast (Bay of Biscay, Spain). Journal of Environmental Management 91, no. 1: 149-59.
Call Number: UZ01100
Abstract: A methodology has been developed to carry out an integrated oil spill vulnerability index, V, for coastal environments. This index takes into account the main physical, biological and socio-economical characteristics by means of three intermediate indexes. Three different integration methods (worst-case, average and survey-based) along with ESI-based vulnerability scores, VESI, proposed for the Cantabrian coast during the Prestige oil spill, have been analyzed and compared in terms of agreement between the classifications obtained with each one for this coastal area. Results of this study indicate that the use of the worst-case index, VR, leads to a conservative ranking, with a very poor discrimination which is not helpful in coastal oil spill risk management. Due to the homogeneity of this coastal stretch, the rest of the methods, VI, VM and VESI, provide similar classifications. However, VM and VI give more flexibility allowing three indexes for each coastal segment and including socio-economic aspects. Finally, the VI procedure is proposed here as the more advisable as using this index promotes the public participation that is a key element in the implementation of Integrated Coastal Zone Management.

Charnes, A., W. W. Cooper, J. Harrald, K. R. Karwan, and W. A. Wallace. 1976. A goal interval programming model for resource allocation in a marine environmental protection program. Journal of Environmental Economics and Management 3: 347-62.
Call Number: UZ00384
Abstract: No abstract

Clarke, Lee. 1990. Oil spill fantasies. Atlantic Monthly : 65-77.
Call Number: UZ00289
Abstract: No abstract

Cohen, Maurie J. 1995. Technological disasters and natural resource damage assessment: An evaluation of the Exxon Valdez oil spill. Land Economics 71, no. 1: 65-82.
Call Number: UZ00448
Abstract: No abstract

Cohn, Ruth E. and William A. Wallace. 1992. Working Paper No. 74. The Role of Emotion in Organizational Response to a Disaster: An Ethnographic Analysis of Videotapes of the Exxon Valdez Accident. University of Colorado, Institute of Behavioral Science, Natural Hazards Research and Applications Information Center, Boulder, Colo..
Call Number: U00226
Abstract: This report discusses the role played by emotions in disaster response. The authors contend that expressed emotions may serve to modify or control the behavior of organizational members and thus affect formal patterns of behavior in a functional, open system organization. In addition, they may exert a positive or negative influence on cognitive processes affecting organizational performance. The Exxon Valdez oil spill provides the substance for the discussion. The paper focuses on examples of observed emotional behavior as captured on videotape--specifically, during the periods of "working through" and "relative completion of response" (the final periods involving stress reactions to serious life events). The behavior is examined in relation to organizations, not individual victims. Expressed emotions are found to be related to diverse organizational goals. The study supports previous findings that indicate that victims of natural disasters are often perceived as victims of events beyond their control, whereas victims of other types of disasters are often perceived as being partially responsible for their fate. A model is presented that illustrates how emotions can affect organizational response to disasters.

Cummings, Ann D. 1992. The Exxon Valdez oil spill and the confidentiality of natural resource damage assessment data. Ecology Law Quarterly 19, no. 2: 363-412.
Call Number: UZ00330
Abstract: No abstract

Dyer, Christopher L., Duane A. Gill, and J. Steven Picou. 1992. Social disruption and the Valdez oil spill: Alaskan natives in a natural resource community. Sociological Spectrum 12: 105-26.
Call Number: UZ00281
Abstract: This study presents a conceptual model for examining the social impacts of the Valdez oil spill on natural resource-dependent communities. Data on social and subsistence disruption experienced by Alaskan natives are analyzed for two time periods: 1989 and 1990. The results reveal substantial uncertainty and disruption, with indications of changing patterns for long-term social impacts. The study concludes with recommendations for restoration and recovery suggested from the results of our data analysis and the natural resource community model.

Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Trustee Council. 1994. Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Restoration Plan. Anchorage, Alas.: U.S. Dept. of the Interior.
Call Number: U00300
Abstract: No abstract

Flin, Rhona H., and Georgina Slaven. 1992. Emergency command responsibilities of offshore oil installation managers. Disaster Management 4, no. 4: 197-201.
Call Number: Serials
Abstract: No abstract

Freire, Juan, Luis Fernandez, and Ramon Muino. 2006. Role of the Spanish scientific community in the initial assessment and management of the environmental damages caused by the Prestige oil spill. Marine Policy 30, no. 4: 308-14.
Call Number: UZ1125
Abstract: The role of the Spanish scientific community in the initial assessment of the environmental and socioeconomic damages caused by the Prestige oil spill is analyzed. A discussion of the reasons for the failures in the response of the scientific community is presented, highlighting that despite the existence of adequate human capital and infrastructures, failures were related to the weakness of the structures and organizational capacity of the scientific institutions and the public administration. Some developments for an effective response to future catastrophes are proposed: (1) oceanographic and ecological models, including scientific and local knowledge; (2) management systems for scientific information; (3) organizational and incentive systems to allow the creation of temporary, large and well-organized multidisciplinary teams; (4) protocols for rapid, “real-time”, damage assessments; and (5) participation of different social groups (NGOs, fishers’ organizations, aquaculture industry or volunteer groups) in plans for the assessment and management of crises.

Garcia Perez, J. D. 2003. Early socio-political and environmental consequences of the Prestige oil spill in Galicia. Disasters 27, no. 3: 207-23.
Call Number: Serials
Abstract: The controversial form in which the oil industry is run has once more caused a huge disaster this one affecting the Galician coastal environment and economy. Oil-spill clean-up operations have been managed in Europe with some success but with considerable economic, environmental and social costs. The oil industry often avoids fully or even partially compensating those affected. The lack of both political will and political power has let the culprit (the oil industry) off the hook. This paper considers the spill of the Prestige to assess whether the balance of power between affected people and the oil industry can be changed. The paper examines the growing awareness of environmental issues among ordinary people in Spain, through the massive involvement of volunteers concerned with the damage done to the environment and to the livelihoods of fishing communities in Galicia. To understand these growing public concerns and the strength of opinion, the paper examines the details of the decisions taken by the central Spanish and local governments and the way these have informed the clean-up operations, the character of the oil companies involved and the feeling of impotence in the face of such disasters. The conclusion here is that the operations of the oil industry should be tightly regulated through EU legislation, and that this can come about as a result of organized political pressure from those affected by the oil spill, from the mass of volunteers, as well as from public opinion at large.

Gill, Duane. 2007. Technological Disaster, Resource Loss and Long-Term Social Change in a Subarctic Community: Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Social Impacts on Alaska Natives and Commercial Fisherman in Cordova, Alaska 2001-2006, Mississippi State University.
Call Number: UZ0945
Abstract: The purpose of this project was to advance understanding of the chronic nature of social impacts caused by technological disasters. The author, focusing on Alaska Natives and commercial fishermen in Cordova, Alaska, studied the persistent ecological damage, and chronic economic, social, psychological, and cultural impacts that continue to affect the community seventeen years after the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill (EVOS). The author’s findings are presented in this report.

Gill, Duane A., and J. Steven Picou. 1998. Technological disaster and chronic community stress. Society and Natural Resources 11, no. 8: 795-815.
Call Number: UZ00545
Abstract: No abstract

Goldberg, Steven D., and Beverly B. Harzog. 1996. Oil spill: Management crisis or crisis management? Journal of Contingencies and Crisis Management 4, no. 1: 1-9.
Call Number: Serials
Abstract: No abstract

Grigalunas, Thomas A., James J. Opaluch, Jerry Diamantides, and Marisa Mazzotta. 1998. Liability for oil spill damages: Issues, methods, and examples. Coastal Management 26, no. 2: 61-77.
Call Number: UZ00529
Abstract: No abstract

Hand, Heather. 1991. Ottawa's high-tech helpers battle oil slicks. Emergency Preparedness Digest 18, no. 3: 21-22.
Call Number: Serials
Abstract: No abstract

Harrald, John R., Joseph V. Leotta, Kirk R. Karwan, and William A. Wallace. 1979. Assessing the effectiveness of a marine environmental protection program. 21-25. Bound.
Call Number: UZ00385
Abstract: No abstract

Alaska Conference of Mayors, Oiled Mayors Subcommittee. 1990. Economic, Social, and Psychological Impact Assessment of the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill, Inc. Impact Assessment.
Call Number: U00211
Abstract: Following the Exxon Valdez oil spill, the state of Alaska underwrote an extensive study of the community impacts of that disaster. The study had three parts: effects on local government operations and finances, effects on businesses and regional economics, and social impacts on communities and psychological impacts on individuals. The study found that in all communities there was a disruption in usual ways of life, although the specific impacts depended on the social, cultural, and economic make-up of the particular community. Additionally, native villages experienced a wider range of impacts, and the clean-up process exacerbated, rather than alleviated problems. After describing the scope of the various problems uncovered (including anxiety, conflict, depression, alcohol use, and domestic violence) the report offers seven recommendations for responding to the continuing effects of the disaster. Some of the findings: 79% of all parents reported that they did not get along with their children as well as they did before the spill; 24% of household survey respondents said they knew of instances of conflict among friends in their communities; and 74.1% of those interviewed felt that the effects are permanent, or at least would be present for the rest of their lives

Kouzmin, Alexander, Neil W. Sainsbury, and Alan M. G. Jarman. 1995. Oil spills, creeping crisis and planning vulnerabilities.
Call Number: Serials
Abstract: No abstract

Kurtz, Rick S. 2004. Coastal oil pollution: Spills, crisis, and policy change. Review of Policy Research 21, no. 2: 201-19.
Call Number: UZ00778
Abstract: The federal government's adoption of the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 represented a radical statutory departure from past policy. Coastal oil spill control provisions that had languished for decades within the industry-friendly confines of a few select congressional subcommittees suddenly became law. Much popular belief credits the 1989 Exxon Valdez spill crisis for bringing about this radical policy change. Closer examination reveals that postcrisis policy change is much more complex. Crisis events intermingle with other short- and long-term factors that either inhibit or support dramatic change. This study analyzes change within the coastal spill arena over several decades. Particular attention is given to crisis episodes, periods identified with a major catastrophe or a successive series of attention-getting spills over a brief time. Analysis finds that crises can play an instrumental role in eliciting change.

———. 2008. Coastal oil spill preparedness and response: The Morris J. Berman incident. Review of Policy Research 25, no. 5: 473-86.
Call Number: UZ01078
Abstract: On January 7, 1994 the disabled tank barge Morris J. Berman ran aground a few hundred yards off-shore of San Juan, Puerto Rico. The resulting 26,000 barrel No. 6 fuel oil spill fouled several miles of prime beachfront, impacted sensitive biota, and threatened historic properties. The Berman spill is noteworthy as the first major incident in U.S. coastal waters following passage of the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (OPA 90). A statutory provision passed in response to the disastrous aftermath of the 10.8 million gallon 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill. The Berman spill tested many of the preparedness and response provisions incorporated in the OPA 90 policy mandate. The Berman incident provides an excellent case study for assessing whether these characteristics were indeed incorporated into the spill response network. And if yes, assess the ability of this incorporation to respond to the Berman spill so as to avoid the organizational foibles that plagued the Exxon Valdez response.

MacKay, William F. 1988. Emergency response at Imperial Oil. Emergency Preparedness Digest 15, No. 1, 11-13.
Call Number: Serials-A
Abstract: No abstract

Marshall, Brent K., Steven Picou, and Jan R. Schlichtmann. 2004. Technological disasters, litigation stress, and the use of alternative dispute resolution mechanisms. Law and Policy 26, no. 2: 289-307.
Call Number: XZ00110
Abstract: The legal system in the United States is uniquely conflict-oriented, expensive, and legalistic. From the perspective of victims, we contend that adversarial litigation is particularly ineffective as a means of resolving conflicts that typically ensue in the aftermath of technological disasters. The purpose of this paper is threefold. First, it discusses why the psychosocial impact of litigation on litigants following a technological disaster is particularly damaging. Secondly, examining longitudinal data collected following the Exxon Valdez oil spill, it demonstrates that the litigation process itself functions as a source of secondary trauma for litigants. Third, we provide suggestions for bypassing the litigation process altogether, via alternative dispute resolution mechanisms.

Mason, Rachel. 1989. Community Preparation and Response to the Exxon Oil Spill in Kodiak, Alaska. Quick Response Report No. 36. University of Colorado, Natural Hazards Research and Applications Information Center, Boulder, Colo..
Call Number: UZ00187
Abstract: No abstract

Miller, Gregory B. 1994. Coastal habitat restoration planning in Louisiana: Lessons from the Greenhill-Timbalier Bay oil spill case. Coastal Management 22, No. 4413-20.
Call Number: CZ00314
Abstract: No abstract

Mitchell, John G. 1996. In the wake of the spill: Ten years after Exxon Valdez. National Geographic 195, No. 3. 95-117.
Call Number: UZ00563
Abstract: No abstract

Needham, Roger D. 1979. Newspapers and the coastal oil spill hazard. Alternatives 8, no. 2: 21-25; 50.
Call Number: RZ00077
Abstract: No abstract

Omohundro, John T. 1982. The impacts of an oil spill. Human Organization 41, no. 1: 17-25.
Call Number: UZ1126
Abstract: No abstract

Ott, Riki. 2008. Not One Drop: Betrayal and Courage in the Wake of the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill. White River Junction, Vt.: Chelsea Green Publishing.
Call Number: U00377

Abstract: On March 14, 1989, the residents of Prince William Sound, Alaska would experience the nation’s largest oil spill that subsequently affected the lives of a community faced with an ecological disaster. This book offers critical lessons for a society traumatized by political divides and facing the looming catastrophe of global climate change. The author, a commercial salmon fisherman and PhD marine biologist, describes firsthand the impacts of oil companies’ broken promises when the Exxon Valdez spill destroyed thousands of miles of shore and illustrates the oil industry’s 20-year trail of pollution and deception that predated the tragic 1989 spill. She relates the disruption to the fishing community of Cordova, Alaska over the following 19 years, describing the human trauma coupled inextricably with that of the sound’s wildlife and its long road to recovery. The author further examines shifts in scientific understanding of oil-spill effects on ecosystems and communities, exposes fundamental flaws in governance and the legal system, and contrasts hard won spill-prevention and spill-response measures in the sound to dangerous conditions on the Alaska pipeline. Overall her story leads to the root of the problem: a clash of human rights and corporate power embedded in law and small-town life.

Palinkas, Lawrence A., Michael A. Downs, John S. Petterson, and John Russell. 1993. Social, cultural, and psychological impacts of the Exxon Valdez oil spill. Human Organization 52, no. 1: 1-13.
Call Number: UZ01123
Abstract: The sociocultural and psychological impacts of the Exxon Valdez oil spill were examined in a population-based study of 594 men and women living in 13 Alaskan communities approximately one year after the spill occurred. A progressive "dose-response" relationship was found between exposure to the oil spill and the subsequent cleanup efforts and the following variables: reported declines in traditional social relations with family members, friends, neighbors and coworkers; a decline in subsistence production and distribution activities; perceived increases in the amount of and problems associated with drinking, drug abuse, and domestic violence; a decline in perceived health status and an increase in the number of medical conditions verified by a physician; and increased post-spill rates of generalized anxiety disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, and depression. Alaskan Natives, women, and 18-44 year olds in the high- and low-exposed groups were particularly at risk for the three psychiatric disorders following the oil spill. The results suggest that the oil spill's impact on the psychosocial environment was as significant as its impact on the physical environment. The results also have important theoretical and pragmatic implications for the understanding and mitigation of adverse impacts of long-term processes of sociocultural change.

Pate-Cornell, M. Elisabeth. 1990. Organizational aspects of engineering system safety: The case of offshore platforms. Science 250: 1210-1217.
Call Number: TZ00205
Abstract: No abstract

Perrow, Charles. 1984. Normal Accidents: Living with High-Risk Technologies. New York, N.Y.: Basic Books.
Call Number: T00143
Abstract: The author, a sociologist, argues that the characteristics of high-risk technologies suggest that no matter how effective conventional safety devices and training programs are, there is a form of accident that is inevitable. Hazards and attendant risks are examined for nuclear power facilities, petrochemical plants, aircraft operations, marine accidents, dam failure, earthquakes, and "exotic" hazards, such as space accidents, weapons failures, and DNA. Other chapters deal with living with high-risk systems, the potential for additional nuclear power plant accidents like that at Three Mile Island, and "complexity, coupling, and catastrophe." It is proposed that hazards be partitioned into three categories: 1) systems that are hopeless and should be abandoned because the inevitable risks outweigh any reasonable benefits (nuclear weapons, nuclear power); 2) hazards that society is either unlikely to be able to do without but could be ameliorated at considerable cost, or where the expected benefits are so substantial that some risks should be run; and 3) systems that are self-correcting to some degree and can be improved with modest effort and expenditures.

Peterson, Charles H., Stanley D. Rice, Jeffrey W. Short, Daniel Esler, James L. Bodkin, Brenda E. Ballachey, David B. Irons. 2003. Long-term ecosystem response to the Exxon Valdez oil spill. Science 302, no. 5653: 2082-86.
Abstract: The ecosystem response to the 1989 spill of oil from the Exxon Valdez into Prince William Sound, Alaska, shows that current practices for assessing ecological risks of oil in the oceans and, by extension, other toxic sources should be changed. Previously, it was assumed that impacts to populations derive almost exclusively from acute mortality. However, in the Alaskan coastal ecosystem, unexpected persistence of toxic subsurface oil and chronic exposures, even at sublethal levels, have continued to affect wildlife. Delayed population reductions and cascades of indirect effects postponed recovery. Development of ecosystem-based toxicology is required to understand and ultimately predict chronic, delayed, and indirect long-term risks and impacts.

Peterson, Charles H., 2000. The Exxon Valdez Oil Spill in Alaska: Acute, Indirect and Chronic Effects on the Ecosystem. Advances in Marine Biology 39: 3-84.
Abstract: Following the oil spill in Prince William Sound, Alaska, in 1989, effects were observed across a wide range of habitats and species. The data allowed researchers to evaluate direct and indirect links between shoreline habitats and the coastal ecosystem in general. The article discusses the damage to the ecosystem from the direct oiling and clean-up treatments as well as the impact and failure of both predators and prey to recover from the spill.

Picou, J. Steven, Duane A. Gill, and Maurie J. Cohen. 1999. The Exxon Valdez Disaster: Readings on a Modern Social Problem. Debuque, Iowa: Kendall/Hunt Publishing Company.
Call Number: U00369
Abstract: No abstract

Picou, Steven, Duane A. Gill, Christopher L. Dyer, and Evans W. Curry. 1990. Social Disruption and Psychological Stress in an Alaskan Fishing Community: The Impact of the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill. Quick Response Report No. 35. University of Colorado, Natural Hazards Research and Applications Information Center, Boulder, Colo..
Call Number: NZ00153

Abstract: No abstract

Pourvakhshouri, Zahra, and Shattri Mansor. 2003. Decision support system in oil spill cases (literature review). Disaster Prevention and Management 12, no. 3: 217-21.
Call Number: UZ00735
Abstract: Oil pollution is one of the most important issues affecting the marine coastal environments all over the world. There are a large number of organizations to propose plans for managing the problems that coastal areas face, including various methods to combat the oil spills. This project proposes to achieve a decision support system (DSS) to assist the users/managers to choose the most suitable method for combating oil spills, according to the coastal area sensitivity. In this regard, and in order to build an appropriate DSS model, some relevant documents regarding oil spills and spills management strategies, GIS-based modeling, and DSS planning were reviewed, some of which are referred to here.

Ramseur, Jonathan L. 2009. Oil Spills in U.S. Coastal Waters: Background, Governance, and Issues for Congress. Congressional Research Service, Washington, D.C.
Call Number: UZ01097

Abstract: During the past two decades, while U.S. oil imports and consumption have steadily risen, oil spill incidents and the volume of oil spilled have not followed a similar course. In general, the annual number and volume of oil spills have shown declines—in some cases, dramatic declines. The 1989 Exxon Valdez spill in Alaskan waters played a large role in stimulating actions that contributed to this trend, particularly the decrease in the annual spill volumes. The Exxon Valdez spill highlighted the need for stronger legislation, inflamed public sentiment, and spurred Congress to enact comprehensive oil spill legislation, resulting in the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (P.L. 101-380). This law expanded and clarified the authority of the federal government and created new oil spill prevention and preparedness requirements. Moreover, the 1990 legislation strengthened existing liability provisions, providing a greater deterrent against spills. After 1990, spill volume from oil tankers, the vessels that carry and have spilled the most oil, decreased significantly.
Considering that U.S. oil consumption and oil imports have steadily increased, the trend of declining spill incidents and volume in past years is noteworthy. Yet, recent annual data indicate that the overall decline of annual spill events may have stopped. Although Energy Information Administration projections indicate that oil imports are expected to decline in coming years, the United States is projected to continue importing a substantial percentage of the oil it consumes.
The threat of oil spills raises the question of whether U.S. officials have the necessary resources at hand to respond to a major spill. There is some concern that the favorable U.S. spill record has resulted in a loss of experienced personnel, capable of responding quickly and effectively to a major oil spill.
Prior to actions by the 109th and 110th Congresses, the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund was particularly vulnerable to a large and costly spill: Fund managers had projected the fund would be completely depleted by FY2009. Recent legislative developments have increased the oil spill liability limits and raised the tax rate that feeds into the trust fund. With these changes in effect, the most recent projection indicates that the fund will reach almost $1.5 billion by the end of
FY2009 and crest $3.5 billion by FY2016. Although the trust fund is now less vulnerable to a major spill, some degree of exposure still remains, thus raising a central policy debate: How should policymakers allocate the costs associated with a major, accidental oil spill? For example, what share of costs should be borne by the responsible party (e.g., oil vessel owner/operators), the oil industry, and the general treasury? No oil spill is entirely benign. Even a relatively minor spill, depending on the timing and location, can cause significant harm to individual organisms and entire populations. Marine mammals, birds, bottom-dwelling and intertidal species, and organisms in early developmental stages—eggs or larvae—are especially vulnerable to a nearby spill. However, the effects of oil spills can vary greatly. Oil spills can cause impacts over a range of time scales, from only a few days to several years, or even decades in some cases. This report reviews the history and trends of oil spills in the United States; identifies the legal authorities governing oil spill prevention, response, and cleanup; and examines the threats of future oil spills in U.S. coastal waters.

Ritchie, Liesel and Duane Gill. 2006. The Selendang Ayu Oil Spill: A Study of the Renewable Resource Community of Dutch Harbor/Unalaska. Quick Response Research Report #181. Natural Hazards Center, Boulder, Colo.
Call Number: UZ00934
Abstract: On December 8, 2004, the Malaysian-flagged freighter Selendang Ayu, carrying 66,000 tons of soybeans and more than 500,000 gallons of fuel grounded and split in two off of Unalaska Island, a remote wildlife-rich area in Alaska’s Aleutian Islands. More than 300,000 gallons of heavy bulk fuel leaked from the Selendang Ayu, much of it washing ashore on beaches of Skan Bay and Makushin Bay, areas that provide recreational, subsistence, and commercial fishing resources for residents of the Dutch Harbor/Unalaska community. The purpose of this study was threefold: 1. Examine community responses to the Selendang Ayu shipwreck and oil spill by applying a conceptual model derived from research on technological disasters; 2. Determine the extent to which this event may be characterized as a technological disaster; and 3. Inform disaster research and improve our conceptual model.

Ritchie, Liesel A., and Duane A. Gill. 2008. The Selendang Ayu shipwreck and oil spill: Considering threats and fears of a worst-case scenario. Sociology Inquiry 78, no. 2: 184-206.
Call Number: UZ00989
Abstract: On December 8, 2004, the Selendang Ayu, a Malaysian-flagged freighter, ran aground off Unalaska Island in Alaska's Aleutian chain. Despite rescue efforts by the United States Coast Guard, six of the Selendang Ayu's crew members died. In addition to the deaths, more than 300,000 gallons of heavy bulk fuel oil spilled into the sea. Much of the oil washed onto the island's shores, into areas providing cultural, recreational, subsistence, and commercial fishing resources for residents of the renewable resource community of Dutch Harbor/Unalaska. The purpose of this article is to identify and examine different dimensions of risk, based on qualitative research conducted in 2005. The authors use a contextual constructionist approach to understand risk, which conceptualizes risk as an objective hazard, threat, or danger that is mediated through social and cultural processes. Research methods included 31 personal interviews, participatory observation, and a review of media coverage. Findings revealed several dimensions of risk perceived by residents: the incident in relation to Dutch Harbor/Unalaska as a high-risk community and more general current events; threats to the community's annual $1 billion seafood industry; threats to Alaska Native subsistence culture; and issues of future risk and uncertainty. Interviews and observations support the authors’ conclusion that the Selendang Ayu incident represented a "shot across the bow" that could have been a "worst case" if oil had contaminated commercial fish processing. Residents believe that it is only a matter of time before another, more damaging accident occurs. Given this general perception, it is important to more clearly assess risk in Dutch Harbor/Unalaska and help the community increase resilience to the multiple hazards it faces. More broadly, Dutch Harbor/Unalaska serves as an example all communities could benefit from better risk assessments and increased attention to resiliency.

Sauri, David, Roger Milego, Aleix Canalis, Anna Ripoll, and Stefan Kleeschulte. 2003. Mapping the Impacts of Recent Natural Disasters and Technological Accidents in Europe. Copenhagen: European Environment Agency.
Call Number: LZ00569
Abstract: This report concentrates on mapping the human, economic, and environmental impacts of natural disasters and technological accidents that occurred in Europe between 1998 and 2002. The disasters covered are floods, storms, wildfires, droughts, landslides, avalanches, and earthquakes. The technological accidents discussed include oil spills and industrials and mining accidents. The overviews at the beginning of each chapter illustrate the extent of the impacts for the major events.

Dagmar Schmidt Etkin. Worldwide Analysis of Marine Oil Spill Cleanup Cost Factors. Presented at the Arctic and Marine Oilspill Program Technical Seminar (June 2000).
Call Number: UZ01124
Abstract: Contingency planners, response officials, government agencies, and oil transporters share a keen interest in being able to anticipate oil spill response costs for planning purposes. Oil spill cleanup response costs depend on a variety of factors, most notably, location, oil type, spill size, and cleanup strategy, making it difficult to develop a universal per-unit cost factor. This study analyzes marine oil spill cleanup costs on the basis of country, proximity to shoreline, spill size, oil type, degree of shoreline oiling, and cleanup methodology to determine how each of these factors impacts per-unit cleanup costs. The results show that oil spill responses in different countries and regions of the world vary considerably in their costs most likely due to differences in cultural values, socio-economic factors, and labor costs. Location, oil type, and spill size also factor heavily in determining cleanup costs. Nearshore spills and in-port spills are 4-5 times as expensive to clean up as offshore spills. Responses to spills of heavy fuels are more than ten times as expensive as spill responses for lighter crudes and diesel fuels. Spill responses for spills under 30 tons are more than ten times as expensive, on a per-unit basis, as for spills of 300 tons. The paper describes a cleanup cost estimation modeling technique that can be applied to marine spills of different types. The model is developed from updated cost data collected from case studies of over 300 spills in 40 nations. The model takes into account oil type, location, spill size, cleanup methodology and shoreline oiling to deduce a per-unit cleanup cost figure.

Shaw, David G. 1992. The Exxon Valdez oil spill: Ecological and social consequences. Environmental Conservation 19, no. 3: 253-58.
Call Number: UZ00372
Abstract: No abstract

Steers, Mike. 1990. Innovative oil spill technology. Emergency Preparedness Digest 17, No. 1, 2-6.
Call Number: Serials
Abstract: No abstract

Suris-Regueiro, Juan C., M. Dolores Garza-Gil, and Manuel M. Varela-Lafuente. 2007. The Prestige oil spill and its economic impact on the Galician fishing sector. Disasters 31, no. 2: 201-15.
Call Number: Serials
Abstract: The sinking of the Prestige oil tanker on 18 November 2002 off the coast of Galicia, Spain, had important economic, environmental and social ramifcations. The aim of this paper is to carry out an initial analysis of the costs related to a halt in fishing activities in Galicia between November 2002 and December 2003. This involves three different steps: an assessment of the cost of the preventative and palliative measures introduced by Spanish public administrations (compensation for affected fishermen and shellfish fisherman); an indirect evaluation of the implications of the disaster (via a study of data on production); and a direct appraisal of the economic impact of the event (reduction in income), using questionnaires completed by a representative sample of fishermen and shellfish fisherman. The results obtained from these three methods of estimating losses are compatible. By December 2003, losses to the Galician fishing sector stood at an estimated EUR 76 million.

Sylves, Richard T. 1998. How the Exxon Valdez disaster changed America's oil spill emergency management. International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters 16, no. 1: 13-43.
Call Number: Serials
Abstract: The March 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill into Prince William Sound, Alaska, profoundly changed America 's oil spill emergency preparedness by compelling enactment of the Oil Pollution Act (OPA) of 1990 and inducing the oil industry to create the Marine Spill Response Organization. This study discerns both improvements and remaining flaws in the US. oil spill emergency preparedness since the Exxon Valdez disaster: Many organizations engaged in oil spill prevention and accident response have improved emergency planning, inspections, accident training and drills, clean-up equipment availability and deployment, and safety programs. Key federal and state agencies, non-governmental organizations, oil companies, and cooperative spill response groups have made many of these changes. Problem regarding spill liability, availability of rapid-response oil spill clean-up contractors, disputed environmental clean-up method, slow conversion to double-hulling oil tankers, disputes over when officials should seek oil spill presidential disaster declarations, single vessel ownership dummy companies, and variable state oil shipping rules will continue to cause complications and vulnerabilities.

Teas, Ch., S. Kalligeros, F. Zanikos, S. Stournas, E. Lois, and G. Anastopoulos. 2001. Investigation of the effectiveness of absorbent materials in oil spills clean up. Desalination 140, no. 3: 259-64.
Call Number: XZ01129
Abstract: The present study examines the absorption capacity of five different types of materials for oil spills clean up. The absorbents were a commercial cellulosic material from processed wood, a commercial synthetic organic fiber from polypropylene and three commercial types of local expanded perlite from the island of Milos. The absorption capacities of the above materials were evaluated in a wet as well as a dry environment with different types of petroleum products. The results showed that commercial types of perlite, in some cases, have absorption capacities comparable to natural and synthetic organic materials used for clean-up applications. The enhancement of the hydrophobic properties of perlite can result in better performance in a water bath. The nature of the spilled oil proved to play an important role in the selection of the proper absorbing material. Overall, the results suggested that partial substitution of commercial synthetic sorbents by mineral materials widely produced in Greece for oil spill clean-up operations is possible, given their friendliness to the environment and their local abundancy.

Tierney, Kathleen J. and E. L. Quarantelli. 1992. Editorial: Social Aspects of the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill. Article No. 240. University of Delaware, Disaster Research Center, Newark, DE.
Call Number: UZ00335
Abstract: No abstract

Tierney, Kathleen J. and Gary R. Webb.1995. Managing Organizational Impressions in Crisis Situations: Exxon Corporation and the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill. Preliminary Paper No. 235. Newark, DE: University of Delaware, Disaster Research Center.
Call Number: QZ00297

Abstract: No abstract

Tuler, Seth, and Thomas Webler. 2009. Stakeholder perspectives about marine oil spill response objectives: A comparative Q study of four regions. Journal of Contingencies and Crisis Management 17, no. 2: 95-107.
Call Number: Serials
Abstract: Marine oil spills can cause major social, economic, and ecological disruptions. Spill response managers must weigh different options and objectives when deciding what to do. We investigated the ways in which preferences for spill response objectives vary among those who are responsible for oil spill contingency planning and response in Buzzards Bay, Delaware Bay, San Francisco Bay, and Washington State regions. The authors begin this paper with a discussion of the research method used in the study: the Q method. In Buzzards Bay, Delaware Bay, and San Francisco Bay three perspectives were identified in each case. In Washington State, two perspectives were identified. An analysis of the 11 case-specific perspectives reveals that they can be described by four 'composite' perspectives that describe how different stakeholders prioritize spill response objectives. These four perspectives are compared on several themes, including the emphasis they placed on mitigating economic impacts, protecting health and safety, mitigating ecological impacts, implementing a coordinated and timely response, addressing the needs and concerns of the affected public/communities, gaining public support for the response, mitigating cultural impacts, and mitigating social nuisance impacts. The implications for spill response planning and spill response evaluation are discussed.

U.S. General Accounting Office. 1989. Coast Guard: Adequacy of Preparation and Response to Exxon Valdez Oil Spill. GAO/RCED-90-44. Washington, D.C.: U.S. General Accounting Office.
Call Number: U00188
Abstract: Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO: (1) evaluated the oil industry's and the federal government's preparedness for responding to a March 1989 spill of over 10 million gallons of crude oil in Prince William Sound, Alaska; and (2) examined industry and government measures that could prevent future spills. GAO found that: (1) the firm operating the vessel targeted its oil spill response plan for spills that accounted for less than 1 percent of the amount spilled in March 1989; (2) equipment breakdowns and weather and water conditions hampered recovery efforts; (3) current recovery and response technology was not adequate for addressing such large spills as the March 1989 incident and had not significantly changed over the last 2 decades due to substantial cuts in federal funding for research and development; (4) although Alaska required the firm operating the vessel to have a spill response plan, other states did not require such plans; (5) the Coast Guard believed that it had authority to monitor spill response and assume partial or total control over response, but lacked authority to ensure the adequacy of response plans before accidents occurred; (6) the federal and state governments widely varied in their use of such oil spill prevention methods as monitoring and directing ship movement, using harbor pilot or tug escort assistance, licensing, and industry training procedures; (7) over the past 20 years, there has been an average of 80 accidents a year involving about 900 tankers transporting other types of hazardous cargo; (8) funding sources for increased prevention efforts included direct industry funding, user fees, and direct appropriations; and (9) there was no single entity or leader responsible for developing, monitoring, or enforcing oil spill prevention and response methods.

U.S. General Accounting Office.1991. Coast Guard: Coordination and Planning for National Oil Spill Response. GAO/RCED-91-212. Washington, D.C.: U.S. General Accounting Office.
Call Number: UZ00326
Abstract: Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the Coast Guard's activities and capabilities for ensuring that spilled oil is contained and recovered, focusing on: (1) the Coast Guard's efforts to coordinate with the private sector and others its plans to purchase oil spill response equipment to avoid unnecessary and wasteful duplication; (2) the new responsibilities the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 places on the private sector and the Coast Guard; and (3) whether those responsibilities call for a shift in emphasis in Coast Guard oil spill response activities. GAO found that: (1) the Coast Guard is developing its equipment plans, for the most part, without preparing and using information on equipment currently owned by private contractors, regional cooperatives, and other federal agencies and also without considering those organizations' specific equipment purchases and placement plans; (2) Coast Guard officials stated that they have a general knowledge of the available private-sector resources and are able to rely on the expertise and professional judgment of Coast Guard personnel in developing equipment plans; (3) the Coast Guard's plans to buy oil spill response equipment risk duplicating private-sector investments; (4) under the act, the Coast Guard is responsible for ensuring that the private sector develops the capability and constant readiness to contain and remove spills of all sizes; (5) as the Coast Guard confirms that industry is developing the capabilities mandated by the act to clean up its own spills, it can pursue a strategy under which it would gradually reduce its inventory of equipment for containing and removing private-sector spills and focus on industry's compliance with mandated responsibilities; (6) in recognizing its responsibilities under the act, industry is planning to spend nearly $1 billion to acquire state-of-the-art response equipment, facilities, and trained personnel; and (7) the act gives the Coast Guard the authority and means to ensure that industry takes the steps necessary to fulfill its obligations.

U.S. General Accounting Office.1990. Coast Guard: Federal Costs Resulting from the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill. GAO/RCED-90-91FS.Washington, D.C.: U.S. General Accounting Office.
Call Number: U00208
Abstract: Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the Exxon Valdez oil spill, focusing on: (1) estimated costs incurred by federal agencies; (2) the approaches agencies used to pursue reimbursement from the responsible oil company; and (3) the amount agencies have been reimbursed.
GAO noted that: (1) nine agencies incurred cleanup, damage assessment, and other costs totaling $125.2 million through September 30, 1989; (2) four of those agencies accounted for 94 percent of total costs incurred, and the Department of Defense accounted for the largest portion, $62.8 million; (3) eight of nine agencies sought reimbursement either from the Coast Guard-administered 311(k) fund or through direct reimbursement agreements with the company; (4) since November 15, 1989, agencies have recovered $80.8 million of total oil spill costs; (5) the agencies have not yet recovered $21.6 million of the unreimbursed $44.4 million, because charges were inadequately documented, exceeded formal cleanup agreements, or were not approved in advance by the Coast Guard; (6) the Departments of Health and Human Services and the Interior will not recover $1 million in costs, since the Coast Guard did not approve the expenses in advance; and (7) agencies estimated that cleanup would require another $9.2 million between October 1989 and February 1990.

U.S. General Accounting Office. 1991. Coast Guard: Millions in Federal Costs May Not Be Recovered From Exxon Valdez Oil Spill. GAO/RCED-91-68. Washington, D.C.: U.S. General Accounting Office.
Call Number: UZ00318
Abstract: Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the Exxon Valdez oil spill, focusing on: (1) the total spill-related costs reported as of June 30, 1990; (2) the extent of the oil carrier company's reimbursement to the government for spill-related costs through September 30, 1990; and (3) improvements needed in the reimbursement process in the event of future spills.
GAO found that: (1) the federal government, as of June 30, 1990, spent almost $154 million on the spill, for which the carrier reimbursed it or was processing reimbursement of $123 million; (2) through June 30, 1990, 10 federal agencies reported spending $116.9 million for removal, $22.6 million for damage assessment, and $14.2 million for other spill-related costs; (3) 4 of those agencies accounted for 87 percent of total costs incurred, and the Department of Defense accounted for $62.2 million, the largest portion; (4) as of September 30, 1990, the oil carrier company reimbursed the federal government for $116.1 million of the $153.7 million agencies reported they spent on the spill; (5) the Coast Guard's spill coordinator did not authorize for reimbursement a number of the agencies' activities, since it did not believe that they were related to oil removal; (6) several agencies lost opportunities to obtain reimbursement from the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund because of problems in tracking and billing their spill-related costs completely and accurately; (7) agencies estimated that future cleanup activities would require at least another $26 million; and (8) the Department of Justice was considering civil litigation against the oil carrier company to recover damage assessment and restoration costs.

U.S. General Accounting Office. 1991. Coast Guard: Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund Not Being Used to Pay All Allowable Costs. Washington, D.C.: U.S. General Accounting Office.
Call Number: UZ00317
Abstract: Pursuant to a legislative requirement, GAO reported on the: (1) Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund's receipts and disbursements as of March 31, 1991; and (2) status of activities under way to fully implement Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (OPA) provisions regarding the fund. GAO found that: (1) as of March 31, 1991, the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund had reached more than half of its $1-billion limit and the Coast Guard had disbursed $14.3 million from the fund; (2) the Coast Guard has not made payments from the fund for costs other than federal spill removal costs because the executive order delegating authority for implementing other aspects of the fund had not been issued as of July 15, 1991; (3) federal agencies involved in oil spill removal may not be reimbursed for all allowable removal costs because the procedures the Coast Guard is using until it develops new regulations do not allow full response cost payments allowed under OPA; (4) the Coast Guard has not taken any steps, such as implementing interim regulations, to allow agencies reimbursement for their nonincremental costs; and (5) Coast Guard procedures do not provide adequate guidance on federal oil spill removal activities or cost calculations.

U.S. General Accounting Office. 2007. Maritime Transportation: Major Oil Spills Occur Infrequently, but Risks to the Federal Oil Spill Fund Remain. GAO-071085. Washington, D.C.: U.S. General Accounting Office.
Call Number: UZ00952
Abstract: When oil spills occur in U.S. waters, federal law places primary liability on the vessel owner or operator--that is, the responsible party--up to a statutory limit. As a supplement to this "polluter pays" approach, a federal Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund administered by the Coast Guard pays for costs when a responsible party does not or cannot pay. The Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 2006 directed GAO to examine spills that cost the responsible party and the Fund at least $1 million. This report answers three questions: (1) How many major spills (i.e., $1 million or more) have occurred since 1990, and what is their total cost? (2) What factors affect the cost of spills? and (3) What are the implications of major oil spills for the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund? GAO's work to address these objectives included analyzing oil spill costs data, interviewing federal, state, and private-sector officials, and reviewing Coast Guard files from selected spills. On the basis of cost information collected from a variety of sources, GAO estimates that 51 spills with costs above $1 million have occurred since 1990 and that responsible parties and the federal Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund (Fund) have spent between about $860 million and $1.1 billion for oil spill removal costs and compensation for damages (e.g., lost profits and natural resource damages). Responsible parties paid between about 72 percent and 78 percent of these costs; the Fund has paid the remainder. Since removal costs and damage claims may stretch out over many years, the costs of the spills could rise. The 51 spills, which constitute about 2 percent of all vessel spills since 1990, varied greatly from year to year in number and cost. Three main factors affect the cost of spills: a spill's location, the time of year, and the type of oil spilled. Spills that occur in remote areas, for example, can increase costs involved in mobilizing responders and equipment. Similarly, a spill occurring during tourist or fishing season might produce substantial compensation claims, while a spill occurring during another time of year may not be as costly. The type of oil affects costs in various ways: fuels like gasoline or diesel fuel may dissipate quickly but are extremely toxic to fish and plants, while crude oil is less toxic but harder to clean up. Each spill's cost reflects a unique mix of these factors. To date, the Fund has been able to cover costs from major spills that responsible parties have not paid, but risks remain. Specifically, the Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 2006 increased liability limits, but GAO's analysis shows the new limit for tank barges remains low relative to the average cost of such spills. Since 1990, the Oil Pollution Act required that liability limits be adjusted above the limits set forth in statute for significant increases in inflation, but such changes have never been made. Not making such adjustments between 1990 and 2006 potentially shifted an estimated $39 million in costs from responsible parties to the Fund.

Wheelwright, Jeff. 1994. Degrees of Disaster: Prince William Sound--How Nature Reels and Rebounds. New York: Simon & Schuster.
Call Number: U00258
Abstract: Alaska's Prince William Sound has been assaulted twice in the past 31 years by catastrophes that many assumed would doom this area of natural beauty. On Good Friday 1964, a magnitude 9.2 earthquake, the largest ever recorded in North America, created massive upheavals of land and devastating tsunamis that destroyed an entire fishing village. Twenty-five years later, on Good Friday 1989, the tanker Exxon Valdez spilled thousands of barrels of crude oil into the sound, decimating marine life and polluting the water and beaches. The author undertook a five-year survey of the area, interviewing over 100 scientists, residents, and government officials, to determine the impacts of these disasters on the ecosystem of Prince William Sound. While much of the book focuses on the Exxon incident, there is considerable information about the effects of the quake on animal populations and coastal ecosystems.

Widener, Patricia. 2009. Oil Tourism: Disasters and Destinations in Ecuador and the Philippines. Sociological Inquiry 79, no. 3: 266-88.
Call Number: UZ01089
Abstract: This article examines the links between the petroleum and tourism industries by analyzing how an oil disaster, whether actual or perceived, may attract nature-based tourism interests. To better understand the role of communities, local governments and/or the media in establishing links between the petroleum and tourism industries, this article explores how the construction of an oil pipeline in Ecuador and an oil spill in the Philippines created opportunities for tourism. Each case contributes to our understanding of how an oil disaster supports nature-based tourism and how both industries supply a resource or an experience to nonlocal consumers, while converging to alter local communities, economies, and ecosystems. Indeed, tourism investments following a disaster may become a sideshow to the disaster that shifts attention from the disaster to participation in new economic opportunities. In addition, tourism may represent ecological alterations, which are more subtle, yet as damaging, as an oil disaster. The proposed model is then applied to two additional cases, the Exxon Valdez oil spill and Hurricane Katrina, to test its use in understanding other postdisaster developments.

WWF International Arctic Program. 2007. Oil Spill: Response Challenges in Arctic Waters. Oslo, Norway: WWF International Arctic Program.
Call Number: XZ00259
Abstract: This report focuses on the challenges of cleaning up oil spills in the arctic, and considers how those challenges may be addressed during all phases of oil and gas development. It considers how typical conditions may contribute to an arctic marine response gap, and recommends a more formal analysis to quantify this gap for arctic regional seas. The intended audience includes policy makers, environmental stewards, and local stakeholders in arctic and sub-arctic regions who are faced with existing or potential oil development in their marine waters. The purpose of this report is to familiarize readers with the basic components of spill response systems and provide an overview of how environmental factors may limit the effectiveness of spill response options in the arctic.