Guidance, Technical Assistance & Planning



Ethanol QRG (2010)

NCP Subpart J Product Schedule
After Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) review, products may be listed on the National Oil and Hazardous Substances Pollution Contingency Plan (NCP) Subpart J Product Schedule (Product Schedule) in accordance with 40 CFR 300.900 et seq. The listing of a product on the Product Schedule does NOT mean that EPA approves, recommends, licenses, certifies, or authorizes the use of that product on an oil discharge. Additionally, the listing of a product on the Product Schedule does not mandate the use of that product by the Federal On-Scene Coordinator (FOSC), state, industry, or any oil spill response organization. Only a FOSC may authorize the use of a product that has been listed on the Product Schedule. RRTs and Area Committees may predetermine the suitability of using a product at a particular location, provided that product is listed on the Product Schedule. In some cases, these “preauthorization zones” have been established for designated areas. The FOSC may authorize the use of products not already pre-authorized for use in a pre-authorization zone, or may authorize the use of products outside of a pre-authorization zone, under the process established by 40 CFR 300.910. In determining the proper response, the FOSC must consider a number of factors unique to each oil discharge when determining which- if any- products should be authorized for use to address the discharge. No single product has been scientifically proven to work more effectively than other products in all potential discharge response situations.

NRT Memo Regarding Recent National Institute of Environmental Sciences and US Coast Guard Cohort Study (June 2018)
NRT memo to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and US Coast Guard (USCG) Regional Response Team (RRT) Co-Chairs regarding recent National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) and USCG Cohort Studies.

Environmental Monitoring for Atypical Dispersant Operations (2013)

Approved by the NRT Members on May 30, 2013, this guidance was developed to assist On-Scene Coordinators (OSCs) and RRTs in making incident-specific and planning decisions regarding environmental monitoring during atypical dispersant operations. The guidance is a living document envisioned to continue addressing monitoring challenges as conditions dictate; and allows for the inclusion of other atypical dispersant applications. In its current version, this document contains the following:

1. Subsea Application Guidance – generally applies to the subsurface ocean environment, focusing particularly on operations in waters below 300 meters and below the average pycnocline.

2. Prolonged Surface Application Guidance – supplements and complements the existing protocols as outlined in the Special Monitoring of Applied Response Technologies (SMART) monitoring program where the duration of the application of dispersants on discharged oil extends beyond 96 hours from the time of the first application.

Sorbents and Solidifiers (2007)
The NRT-RRT Factsheet Application of Sorbents and Solidifiers for Oil Spills is a planning document written by the NRT Science and Technology Committee. It was developed to inform readers of the acceptable use or prohibition of solidifiers listed on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) National Oil and Hazardous Substances Pollution Contingency Plan (NCP), Subpart J Product Schedule (Product Schedule) for mitigation of oil spills. This Factsheet will also assist product manufacturers and members of the response community in distinguishing a sorbent from a solidifier for purposes of listing such products on the Product Schedule and applying them in the field. Finally, the document can be used for identifying the benefits and shortcomings of using solidifiers in different situations (e.g., light oil, sheens, heavy viscous oils, low temperature) and contrasting that to the use of sorbents.

Interactive Selection Guide for Oil Spill Response Countermeasures (
Use it to simplify your evaluation of non-conventional ("applied") technologies, including chemical and biological products and additives, and in-situ burning (ISB), for real-time oil spill response, exercises, pre-spill planning, or informational purposes.

Best Practices for Migratory Bird Care During Oil Spill Response (2003)
For use by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and other natural resource management agencies, oiled bird rehabilitators, On-Scene Coordinators (OSCs), and Potentially Responsible Parties (PRPs) as a guide in developing appropriate sections of Area Contingency Plans, evaluating contractors for bird capture and rehabilitation, making informed choices during spill responses, and evaluating oiled bird rehabilitation activities to improve field practices.The creators of this document set out to define and recommend the best practices for their field with the aim of promoting the welfare of migratory birds during an oil spill response.

Consolidated List of Chemicals Subject to the Emergency Planning and Community Right-To-Know Act and Section 112 of the Clean Air Act (EPA)
This consolidated list or "list of lists" has been prepared to help firms handling chemicals determine whether they need to submit reports under sections 302, 304, or 313 of Emergency Planning and Community Right-To-Know Act (EPCRA); whether they are subject to accident prevention regulations; and what reports may need to be submitted.

Guide to Special Monitoring of Applied Response Technologies (2001)
Special Monitoring of Applied Response Technologies (SMART), a guidance document, recommends monitoring methods, equipment, personnel training, and command and control procedures that strike a balance between the operational demand for rapid response and the Unified Command's (UC's) need for feedback from the field in order to make informed decisions.

Bioremediation in Oil Response (2000)
An information update on the use of bioremediation, a technique that may be applicable in responding to an oil spill under certain geographic and climatic conditions. Bioremediation converts toxigenic compounds of oil to nontoxic products without disrupting the local environment.

Emulsion Breakers and Inhibiters for Treating Oil Spills (1997)
Emulsification of oil can severely inhibit recovery capabilities of skimmers, reduce pumping volumes, and render non-mechanical techniques less effective. Emulsion breakers (de-emulsifiers) are used to break or prevent the formation of emulsions on the open seas and break recovered emulsions in skimmers and tanks. This fact sheet provides an up-to-date summary of emulsion breaker research, and identifies further needed areas of research.

Oil Spill Field Operations Guide (1996)
Produced by the Standard Oil Spill Response Management System (STORMS) task force, this Field Operations Guide (FOG) is intended to provide guidance in forming a response management system for oil spills. It is endorsed by Firescope California, is consistent with the National Incident Management System (NIMS) and Incident Command System/Unified Command (ICS/UC) and complies with the National Oil and Hazardous Substances Pollution Contingency Plan (NCP).

Temporary Storage Devices (Towable) (1995)
Provides information on the use of towable, temporary storage devices (TSD) in oil spill response as an immediate temporary storage receptacle, on-site.

Use of Chemical Dispersants on Oil Spills (1993)
Discusses the use of chemical dispersants as an oil spill response strategy for open-water application. Reviews past use, effectiveness, toxicity, and mechanics of dispersant.

Training Reference for Oil Spill Response (1994)
There are four federal agencies with responsibilities under the Oil Pollution Act (OPA) to require vessel and facility response plans: the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Department of Transportation’s (DOT's) Research and Special Programs Administration (RSPA), and the Minerals Management Service (MMS). In order to assist companies in meeting their regulatory responsibilities to develop training programs for their personnel, the four federal agencies have developed this training reference manual for oil spill response. The contents provide a foundation of suggested subject material for training personnel with responsibilities identified in response plans.

External Links

External Links

Oil Fact Sheets for Spill Responders (NOAA)

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration developed the following fact sheets provide technical information about the characteristics of different oils, their behavior when spilled, and their effects on wildlife, plants, and habitats:

- Biodiesel Spills

- Denatured Ethanol Spills

- Dielectric Fluids Spills (non-PCB fluids)

- Small Diesel Spills (500-5,000 gallons)

- Diluted Bitumen (Dilbit) Spills

- Heavy Fuel Oil (HFO) Spills

- Kerosene and Jet Fuel Spills

- Non-Petroleum Oil Spills

- Light Shale (Tight) Oil Spills

- Synthetic-Based Drilling Mud Spills


Final Bakken Crude Oil: Worker Health and Safety Pilot Scale Studies (2018)

Two studies were performed by the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Environmental Response Team (ERT) with the assistance of the Scientific, Engineering, Response and Analytical Services (SERAS) contract program to further the knowledge base for those responding to oil discharges that pose a threat to human health and/or the environment. While significant testing has been performed by different organizations on crude oil produced from the Bakken formation, the testing is generally comprised of standard petroleum characteristic analyses and characterization for proper transportation based on Department of Transportation (DOT) classifications. The data from these testing programs have provided critical knowledge for classifying and understanding standard properties of hazardous materials - in this case, a light, sweet crude oil. The primary purpose of these Pilot Scale Studies was to determine air concentrations, under observed meteorological conditions, of benzene in Bakken Crude following spills to water. The resulting information helps to inform initial decision-making and thereby better protect workers involved in a Bakken Crude Oil release response.

Interagency Coordinating Committee on Oil Pollution Research  (ICCOPR)

ICCOPR is a 15-member Interagency Committee established by Title VII of the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (Section 7001). ICCOPR was established to: "...coordinate a comprehensive program of oil pollution research, technology development, and demonstration among the federal agencies, in cooperation and coordination with industry, universities, research institutions, state governments, and other nations, as appropriate, and shall foster cost-effective research mechanisms, including the joint funding of the research."




Working together to protect against threats to our land, air and water

United States Environmental Protection Agency United States Coast Guard United States Department of State United States Department of Defense U.S. Department of Homeland Security (FEMA) United States Department of Energy United States Department of Agriculture United States Department of Health & Human Services United States Department of the Interior United States Department of Commerce United States Department of Transportation United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission United States General Services Administration United States Department of Justice United States Department of Labor