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NEW DELHI, 30 NOVEMBER (UH). The Indian Coast Guard conducted the 24th National Oil Spill Disaster Contingency Plan (NOS-DCP) and Preparedness Meeting at Chennai on 30 Nov 22. Director General VS Pathania, PTM, TM, Director General Indian Coast Guard, Chairman NOSDCP, chaired the meeting. About 100 delegates including representatives of various Ministries, Central and State Government departments and agencies, the State Pollution Control Board, Ports, and Oil Handling Companies participated in the meeting.

The national capabilities with the common aim to ensure collective preparedness to respond to any oil and chemical spill contingency in Indian waters were reviewed during the meeting.

Presently, as the third largest importer of crude, India receives large volumes of oil through ships. Similarly, India stands sixth in the world as a major chemical importer country. Both oil and chemicals if spilled pose inherent risks to the Maritime Zones of India and the connected coastlines housing large coastal populations, marine eco-system, industries and various installations along with supporting the tourism industry. Preventive measures, by the Central Coordinating Agency, Ports, Ship Owners, Oil Handling Facilities, Coastal States, and other concerned stakeholders are thus, required to be taken to prepare for combating any likely marine spill.

Director General VS Pathania, Director General Indian Coast Guard, Chairman, NOSDCP in his address, committed that ICG is cognizant and prepared to the threats to the Region and its resources, including marine oil and chemical spill at sea. He stressed that as new vulnerabilities continue to emerge, the stakeholders must recognize the opportunity to enhance cooperation through stronger partnerships, effective  coordination and imbibing best practices of the developing technology.

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