Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Maritime Affairs


Oceans Sustainability, Governance & Management


Malmö, Sweden



First Advisor

Long, Ronan.


This dissertation assesses Kenya’s capacity to effectively prepare and respond to oil spill incidents and compares it to recommended international practice. The study is based on analysis of available data and questionnaires administered to personnel involved in oil spill preparedness and response in Kenya as well as International Organizations involved in oil spill response and training. Globally sea borne trade has been increasing and this has reflected in Kenya where the country has embarked on expanding its shipping industry. This exposes the country to the risk of oil spill and further compounded by busy tanker route through the territorial sea and exclusive economic zone to the Middle East. Kenya is fortunate not have experienced a large oil spill incident previously. The country has ratified OPRC Convention and adopted national systems in effort to implement the provisions of the convention. The findings show that Kenya put some measure towards giving full and complete effect to OPRC convention. The country has designated oil spill competent authority in preparedness and response. The Government in collaboration with oil companies has established an equipment stockpile in accordance with international requirements. Personnel from oil companies and government have been trained in oil spill preparedness and undertaken oil spill response exercise. However, the trainings and exercise were found to be inadequate to handle large spill. It was further found that Kenya has a draft National Oil spill response contingency plan and draft dispersant use policy. The country lacks specific regulations on oil spill preparedness and response. This dissertation assesses whether Kenya is adequately prepared to handle large spill under the current response regime and gives recommendations on the key areas for improvement.