Spills photo identifier

Spills Program

Best Achievable Protection (BAP) & Best Achievable Technology (BAT)

Welcome to the Department of Ecology's Best Achievable Protection (BAP) and Best Achievable Technology (BAT) Review webpage.

This site is dedicated to the coordination and dissemination of research and development information related to oil spill preparedness and contingency planning efforts for facilities, vessels and pipelines regulated under Washington Administrative Code Chapter 173-182, Oil Spill Contingency Plan Rule.

House Bill 1186 required Ecology to update the Oil Spill Contingency Plan rule to ensure that our state achieves the highest standards of protection through requiring best technology, staffing levels, training procedures and operational methods in covered vessel oil spill plans. The contingency planning rule was last updated January 14, 2013 to reflect legislative direction in E2SHB 1186. The updated contingency planning rule includes a new requirement the Best Achievable Protection Review Cycle WAC 173-182-621.

We use the BAP 5-year review cycle to:

  • Employ a coordinated and collaborative approach to address identified response issues and potential response resource needs.
  • Help remove technical or regulatory barriers to the implementation of new technologies.
  • Measure our research results, outputs, and impacts.
  • Ensure transparency by posting all program processes, actions, and products on our program webpage.

Best Achievable Protection Conference

We hosted a Best Achievable Protection Conference May 20-21, 2015 in Seattle. This conference is one of the ways we are employing a coordinated approach to identified response issues and potential response resource needs. Visit the conference page to view the agendas and presentations given.

Research & Development (R&D):

The Department of Ecology does not have funding to sponsor research and development projects at this time but we are interviewing response equipment experts to get their opinions on promising new response technologies. We are also implementing our Ecology BAP/BAT Technology Assessment Process - a mechanism for consistently evaluating technology. Finally, we are tracking and monitoring progress in other federal, state, and industry R&D projects.

R&D websites:

If you have an R&D source you would like to see listed here, please contact us.

Current Areas of BAP/BAT focus include:

  • Submerged oil equipment and response tactics.
  • Aerial surveillance, remote sensing, and other detection technologies for oil spills.
  • Common operational picture and situational awareness tools.
  • Alternatives to the concept of Effective Daily Recovery Capacity (EDRC).
  • Response system effectiveness. We are reviewing technical manuals required under WAC 173-182-520 to better understand the recovery systems plan holders will rely on during oil spill responses.
  • How much is enough? We are reviewing investments in efficient equipment and ensuring their are no regulatory barriers to the implementation and use of new efficient technologies.
  • Review of emerging risks of oil transferred by rail.
  • Studying the effects of diluted bitumen on the environment. Ecology is tracking a new study.

What BAP/BAT categories should the program review in the future? Send us your ideas.

BAP Gantt Chart


Contingency Plans Home

State-Approved Contingency Plans

Contingency Plan Review and Public Comment

Planning Standard Spreadsheets

Technical Assistance for Industry

Technical Manual Planning Standard


Oil Spill Contingency Plan Rule
Chapter 173-182 WAC

Vessel Oil Spill Prevention and Response
Chapter 88.46 RCW

Oil and Hazardous Substance Spill Prevention and Response
Chapter 90.56 RCW


Western Response Resource List


Sonja Larson
Response Technology Specialist