Australian federal governments, state and industry have authorised a new national plan for maritime environmental emergencies.
Managed by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority, the plan sets out the cooperative arrangements between governments and industry to respond to maritime pollution and shipping casualty incidents.
Key stakeholders from industry and government have reviewed the plan offering extensive input, drawing on their experience with maritime emergencies both domestically and internationally.
AMSA chief executive Graham Peachey said: "Following extensive collaboration with industry, state and territory governments and emergency services, the new plan is designed to integrate more effectively within Australia's disaster management arrangements."
A cornerstone of the review risk assessment resulted in a boost to national plan response equipment stockpiles across Australia, as well as the establishment of emergency towage capabilities in two new regions, as part of contract arrangements.
"These stockpiles are strategically located in nine ports around the coastline and can be drawn on in the event of an oil spill or a stricken vessel causing pollution in our marine environment," Peachey added.
"AMSA invests in a significant training programme so people around Australia have the skills to respond to any potential marine pollution."
The new national plan, successor to the 2001 plan to combat pollution of the sea by oil and other hazardous and noxious substances, has been endorsed by Australia's federal and state and territory governments.