Taken Question
Office of the Spokesman
Washington, DC
June 14, 2010

Question: Has the US made any specific requests for foreign assistance in the Deepwater Horizon oil spill?


  • The Department of State has sought information about possible sources of supply and equipment. We have not issued an appeal for assistance.
  • The National Incident Command (NIC), headed by the U.S. Coast Guard, is working with the Department of State to support the Unified Area Command (UAC) as it sources equipment, supplies and expertise.
  • Department of State assists in this effort to source equipment, supplies and services from foreign governments and international bodies in three ways: 1) receiving offers of assistance, forwarding these offers to the UAC through the NIC, and communicating with those governments and bodies about their offers; 2) reaching out through our posts abroad to locate potential sources of critical supplies and equipment; and 3) supporting BP’s international sourcing through our diplomatic and consular functions, such as reaching out to relevant ministries and expediting visa processing.
  • The Unified Area Command has identified a need to locate sources of 18-24” containment boom and fire boom. On June 10, the Department of State requested information from foreign governments and international bodies, including the EU nations, about possible sources of this equipment and supply. We have begun to receive information and inquiries from governments and private companies worldwide and have shared that with the Unified Area Command. We are also in the process of contacting foreign governments and international bodies to identify possible sources of high speed, high capacity off-shore skimmers.
  • With few exceptions, these international offers of assistance are made on a reimbursable basis, which means that the assistance is provided only if paid for by the recipient.

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PRN: 2010/793