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Dispersants: surface application

April 2015

Revision 2016

Dispersant use can be an effective way of minimizing the overall ecological and socio-economic damage, by preventing oil from reaching coastal habitats and shorelines and enhancing the natural biodegradation processes that ultimately assimilate oil into the environment. What dispersants are and how they work when applied to oil slicks on the sea’s surface are described, including their capabilities and limitations. The need for regulation, the advantages of preplanning and advance authorization, operational procedures and monitoring during their use are highlighted.

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