Ballast Water Management

Ballast Water Management Convention to Be Postponed?

The Ballast Water Convention will come into force on 8 September 2017.

The convention seeks to stop the spread of harmful aquatic organisms from one region to another via a ship's ballast water.

Ballast water may be taken onboard by ships for stability and can contain thousands of aquatic or marine microbes, plants and animals, which are then carried across the globe. Untreated ballast water released at the ship’s destination could potentially introduce a new invasive marine species.  Hundreds of such invasions have already taken place, sometimes with devastating consequences for the local ecosystem.

The International Convention for the Control and Management of Ships' Ballast Water and Sediments (BWM Convention?) was adopted in 2004 to introduce global regulations to control the transfer of potentially invasive species. Once the treaty enters into force, ballast water will need to be treated before it is released into a new location, so that any microorganisms or small marine species are killed off.

During the IMO´s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC 70) held in October 2016, some discrepancies on the proposed timescale for installing ballast water treatment systems were reported.

The IMO implementation schedule for BWTS implies “first IOPP renewal survey after the entry into force of the Convention” at the latest.

This mean that most vessels (which do not already have a BWTS installed) will be requested to install such equipment in the period 2017–2021 – in each case before the expiry date of the vessel’s IOPP certificate.

These discrepancies were going to be discussed at the next session, MEPC 71.

MEPC 71 is to be held in June 2017 and a compromise proposal has been jointly submitted by Brazil, India, Cook Islands, Norway, the UK and Liberia.

The administrations propose an amendment of Regulation B-3 of the BWM Convention. This amendment would effectively postpone the start date of the phasing-in program for installing approved ballast water treatment systems on existing ships by two years. (According to North P&I Club)

See full article: World Maritime News

More info:

How Ballast Water Treatment Systems could affect Charterparties?: North P&I Club

Ballast Water Management Regulation: IMO