Applying geospatial technology to oil spill response planning in the Western Basin of Lake Erie

Document Type

Conference Paper/Presentation

Publication Date



Area Contingency Plans (ACPs) and their associated Geographic Response Plans (GRPs) are site-specific documents designed to outline steps to be taken by responders to protect sensitive sites after an oil or chemical spill. They are designed to improve the speed and efficiency of a response during the critical first few hours after a spill. Existing paper based plans and their associated maps, tables and graphics can be difficult to update and expensive to distribute on paper. The result can be response maps and supporting data tables that may not be up to date, leaving response and command personnel with an incomplete picture of conditions during an incident. This paper describes work done in collaboration with the Western Lake Erie Area Committee, US and Ohio EPA and the US Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit Toledo to create a GIS based dataset of protection strategies for ecologically and economically sensitive sites in the event of an oil spill in the western basin of Lake Erie. The work also provides a framework for development of GIS based protection strategies and spill response plans elsewhere in the Great Lakes.

Publisher's Statement

© 2015 The authors.

Publication Title

IAGLR 58th Annual Conference on Great Lakes Research