The Maine and New Hampshire Area Committee, formed in accordance with the Oil Pollution Act of 1990, is comprised of federal, state, and local officials responsible for preparing and maintaining the Area Contingency Plan to promote a coordinated and effective response to discharges of oil or hazardous materials impacting the coast or coastal waters of Maine or New Hampshire. This includes plans to respond to discharges from vessels, offshore facilities, and onshore facilities. In addition to governmental agencies, numerous individuals from oil spill response organizations, industry, and environmental groups participate in the Committee's planning process and play a key role in the preparedness of the region. The Maine and New Hampshire Area Committee meets twice a year, once in Maine and once in New Hampshire. Meetings are usually held in April and October.
Area Committee Co-chairs:
CAPT Amy E. Florentino, U.S. Coast Guard
Gardner Warr, New Hampshire DES
Chris Hopper, Maine DEP
For additional information regarding the Area Committee or meetings, please contact Wyman Briggs, US Coast Guard Sector Northern New England, at 207-780-3086.
Date: October 10, 2023
Location: NH Department of Environmental Services, 222 International Dr., Suite 175, Portsmouth, NH
Agenda (to be announced)
Goals and Objectives
The Executive Steering Committee of the Area Committee develops goals and objectives to guide work throughout the year. The overall goals and objectives for 2022 are as follows. Please refer to the full workplan for more details on actions and accomplishments under each of the goals and objectives.
- Develop, update and maintain an effective Area Contingency Plan (ACP) to guide the containment and recovery of a worst case (or other size) oil/chemical discharge from a vessel, facility or other source along the ME/NH coastline.
- Pre-plan response efforts including mechanical recovery, dispersant, shoreline cleanup, protection of sensitive areas and rescue and rehabilitation of birds and wildlife, public affairs, etc.
- Promote the use of the Incident Command System (ICS) to manage marine oil spill response under a coordinated/unified command.
- Sponsor training in the Incident Command System, On-water boom deployment, Science of Spills, Shoreline Cleanup Assessment Technique (SCAT), and similar topics to enhance responder preparedness.
- Host engaging Area Committee Meetings and connect with new response partners and stakeholders.
- Oversee a comprehensive exercise program including quarterly notification and unannounced facility deployment drills (GIUEs), annual spill management team exercises, annual equipment deployments, and quadrennial full-scale exercises.
- Support the Portsmouth Oil Spill Response Work Group’s (POSRWG’s) efforts to improve response capabilities and maximize preparedness in the NH and southern ME coastal areas.
- Support the Penobscot River Oil Pollution Abatement Committee (PROPAC's) efforts to improve response capabilities and maximize preparedness in the NH and southern ME coastal areas.
- Continue to maintain and enhance Sector Northern New England's spill response equipment capabilities.