02 March 2016: The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC®) announces that the International Association of Oil & Gas Producers (IOGP) through the Geomatics Committee and IPIECA (the global oil and gas industry association for environmental and social issues) have issued, in cooperation with OGC and Resource Data, Inc., the OGC IOGP/IPIECA Recommended Practice for a Common Operating Picture for Oil Spill Response. This is the final report of the IOGP/IPIECA Joint Industry Project to produce a recommended practice for GIS/Mapping in support of Oil Spill Response and for the use of GIS technology and geospatial information in forming a Common Operating Picture (COP) for management of the response.

Rob Cox, Technical Director, IPIECA, explained, “The report lays the groundwork for coordinated activities by multiple stakeholders that need to come together quickly to respond to a spill. Having the report endorsed as an OGC Best Practice gives it the authority it needs to act as a focal point in support of that coordination.”

As stated in the report, “Responding to an oil spill requires access to and understanding of many types of information. Effective, coordinated operations for the response are based on a shared, common picture of the situation. Interoperability provides shared situational awareness of the crisis and the response activities. What is needed is a common picture of reality for different organizations that have different views of the spill so that they all can deal with it collectively.

Recent oil spills have provided lessons learned and recommendations on forming a Common Operating Picture for oil spill response. Through a joint project, industry is responding to the call, moving from recommendations to reusable best practices supported by open standards that can be deployed quickly in any region of the globe.

This architecture report is part of the IOGP and IPIECA Oil Spill Response – Joint Industry Project (IOGP–IPIECA OSR-JIP) to produce a recommended practice for GIS/mapping in support of oil spill response and for the use of GIS technology and geospatial information in forming a Common Operating Picture to support management of the response.

The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) is an international consortium of more than 515 companies, government agencies, research organizations, and universities participating in a consensus process to develop publicly available geospatial standards. OGC standards support interoperable solutions that “geo-enable” the Web, wireless and location-based services, and mainstream IT. OGC standards empower technology developers to make geospatial information and services accessible and useful with any application that needs to be geospatially enabled.

The International Association of Oil & Gas producers (IOGP) is a unique global forum in which members identify and share best practices to achieve improvements in every aspect of health, safety, the environment, security, social responsibility, engineering and operations. IOGP encompasses most of the world's leading publicly-traded, private and state-owned oil & gas companies, industry associations and major upstream service companies. IOGP members produce more than half the world's oil and about one third of its gas.

IPIECA is the global oil and gas industry association for environmental and social issues. IPIECA was formed in 1974 following the launch of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). IPIECA is the only global association involving both the upstream and downstream oil and gas industry on environmental and social issues. IPIECA's membership covers over half of the world's oil production. IPIECA is the industry's principal channel of communication with the United Nations. When IPIECA was set up in 1974 the acronym stood for the International Petroleum Industry Environmental Conservation Association. In 2009, recognizing that this no longer accurately reflected the breadth and scope of the association's work, IPIECA stopped using the full title. The association is now known as IPIECA, the global oil and gas industry association for environmental and social issues.

Resource Data, Inc. (RDI) has been supporting the oil & gas industry with information technology for spill response since 1989. RDI brings unparalleled experience to oil spill response, leading the geographic information system (GIS) and database teams for the Exxon-Valdez spill and more recently the GIS response team in the Macondo/Deepwater Horizon spill. RDI has developed numerous spill response data systems, participated in multiple drills, and developed risk analysis systems for major pipeline networks. Our depth and breadth of expertise in spill preparedness and response uniquely positions RDI to assist in the development of a Common Operating Picture for the oil & gas industry.