Oil-related activities such as single point mooring (SPM), installation, navigation, marine transportation, and oil exploration all have the potential to cause oil spills and pose major threats to the coastal ecosystem along the Indian coast. The Gulf of Kachchh, a biologically rich ecosystem composed of mudflats, submergible shoals, islands, sandy beaches, rocky shore, coral reefs, and mangroves, is located along the northwest coast of India. Its proximity to the Persian Gulf has attracted the establishment of facilities for transferring, piping, and loading of crude oil and petroleum products, mainly the Arabian crude. The marine ecosystem of the gulf is always at risk due to accidental and operational oil spills in the gulf. In this paper, an attempt is made to identify the resources that are at risk due to such oil spills. An integrated numerical simulation modeling approach has been applied to generate the probable oil trajectory and fate analysis, and the results have been integrated into geographic information systems (GIS) to locate and estimate the resources at risk. Sensitivity analysis of the resources available in the study area was carried out in order to set the resource protection priorities in the event of an oil spill.
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Vol. 23 • No. 5