Pacific Islands Marine Spill Response Plan
Status of initiative: On track
Description/achievement of initiative

The Aim of PACPLAN is:To prevent/minimise damage to marine and coastal environments and resources from marine spills, and to provide systems, frameworks and guidelines to assist with response and recovery of the environment and resources damaged by marine spills in the Pacific islands region.The Objectives of PACPLAN are:■ To promote and implement regional co-operation in planning and training for marine spill response, and in the actual prevention of, and response to, marine spills;■ To facilitate actions and cooperation consistent with the noumea Pollution Protocol 1986, the OPRC Convention and the OPRC-HnS Protocol at the operational level by all SPREP members, including those that are not yet parties to these instruments;■ To provide systems for the detection and reporting of marine spills within the area covered by the plan, including communications networks;■ To outline the proactive and counter-measures available to contain and minimise the impacts of a spill on life, the environment, heritage, cultural and economic interests;■ To outline the mechanism and procedures by which SPREP island members may request assistance, in the form of specialised equipment and technical experts; from each other, from SPREP metropolitan members, or from industry;■ To provide guidance for the recovery of costs of responding to marine spills;■ To outline arrangements for resourcing maintenance of PACPLAN and associated systems by SPREP; and■ To provide a platform for information sharing and as a learning tool.

Implementation methodologies

Traditionally, spill response plans tend to focus exclusively on oil spills. Internationally, there is increasing recognition that it is more effective and efficient to integrate oil spill response arrangements with those for all pollutants, including oil and hazardous and noxious materials (HnS) as defined in the OPRC-HnS Protocol.PACPLAN therefore covers the response to spills into the marine environment of all forms of pollutants. However, it retains a focus on oil spills, as oil is the main pollutant likely to be spilled in the region.PACPLAN covers spills into the marine environment from all sources.

Arrangements for Capacity-Building and Technology Transfer

Coordination mechanisms/governance structure


Cook Islands, Palau, American Samoa (U.S.), Australia, Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Northern Mariana Islands (U.S.), France, Kiribati, Samoa, French Polynesia (France), New Zealand, Marshall Islands, Solomon Islands, Guam (U.S.), United States of America, Federated States of Micronesia, Tonga, New Caledonia (France), United Kingdom, Nauru, Tuvalu, Tokelau (NZ), Niue, Vanuatu, Wallis and Futuna (France).
Resources devoted to implementation
Progress reports
Cut off date each year: 1 July
This initiative does not yet fulfil the SMART criteria.
Date of completion: ongoing
Operating in countries
Partner connections
Contact information/focal point(s)
Pacific Islands Marine Spill Response Plan, Email

Copyright 2017 United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs