Cooperation Within Maritime Environmental Response

International cooperation promotes detection and prevention of accidents at an early stage. Photo: The Swedish Coast Guard

National cooperation

Discharges of oil or other hazardous substances such as chemicals, hybrid or vegetable oils, pose a serious threat to the marine environment. An oil accident or oil spill in Swedish waters usually involves several different actors.

  • The Swedish Coast Guard is responsible for managing oil spills at sea or in the large Swedish lakes Vänern, Vättern and Mälaren.
  • The regional/municipal emergency rescue services are responsible for management once an oil spill or discharge reaches the shore or if it occurs in municipal waters such as rivers or harbours.
  • The Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency (MSB) helps municipalities coordinate oil spill prevention on land.

National Advisory Board on Oil Spill Prevention

A national coordination group focuses prevention of oil spills along the Swedish coast. It includes representatives from the Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency, the Swedish Coast Guard, the Swedish Transport Agency, Swedish Maritime Administration, the Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions (SALAR) and the Marine and Water Authority.

International cooperation

International cooperation promotes detection and prevention of accidents at an early stage. If a serious accident were to occur offshore, the Swedish Coast Guard is able to enlist the help of other countries in accordance with various cooperation agreements. The Swedish Coast Guard is by the same agreements prepared to help other countries.

There is extensive international cooperation with the Baltic Sea countries in the Helsinki Commission (HELCOM), with the North Sea countries under the Bonn Agreement, with the Nordic countries in the Copenhagen Agreement and with the EU through EMSA (European Maritime Security Agency). Within the framework of these agreements, regular meetings and exercises are held, in which countries work together to develop the capacity for cooperation in the event of maritime accidents.