Support to oil spill emergencies in the Bonifacio Strait, western Mediterranean
An innovative forecasting system of the coastal marine circulation has been implemented in the Bonifacio Strait area, between Corsica and Sardinia, using a numerical approach to facilitate the rapid planning and coordination of remedial actions for oil spill emergencies at sea by local authorities. Downscaling and nesting techniques from regional to coastal scale and a 3-D hydrodynamic numerical model, coupled with a wind wave model, are the core of the integrated Bonifacio Strait system. Such a system is capable of predicting operationally the dispersion of hydrocarbon spills in the area, both in forward and backward mode, through an easy-to-use graphical user interface. A set of applications are described and discussed including both operational applications aimed at providing rapid responses to local oil spill emergences and managing applications aimed at mitigating the risk of oil spill impacts on the coast.