Whether an illegal discharge is due to negligence (such as poor maintenance of equipment) or is deliberate (even actively promoted by the company), it is usually the result of action/inaction both on the part of ship operators, and of ship master and crew. On some occasions, violations of pollution regulations may result from lack of awareness by operators and crew. Deliberate illegal discharges occur due to a conjunction of two factors: 1) there are economic advantages for ship operators; 2) there is a low risk of being caught and penalised. Motivations for the individual crew members are slightly different; these are less likely to include cost savings, but may be based on an intention to follow perceived instructions (often implied rather than explicit) and/or fear of losing a job. The following information are an extract from EMSA’s “Addressing Illegal Discharges in the Marine Environment” publication.
BSR’s Clean Cargo Working Group’s 2013 “Collaborative Progress” report-which provides data from more than 2,300 ships, representing more than 60 percent of global ocean container capacity-indicates that average carbon-dioxide emissions for global ocean container transport have declined year on year, and by more than 7 percent between 2011 and 2012.
Shipping is the only sector without an EU cap on emissions. In 2009, the EU committed to include shipping in its climate policy but instead the Commission proposed last year only to monitor CO2 emissions. While the Monitoring, Reporting and Verification (MRV) proposal is a step in the right direction, it lacks ambition and will have little impact if left unchanged. It can be strengthened to create a MRV system that may not only be used for CO2, but also for SOx and NOx – harmful air pollutants. To actually reduce emissions, unreliable monitoring methods should be removed, and data transparency should be ensured. Finally, there should be a path for transition of MRV requirements into real emissions-reduction measures.
At its 65th session, the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) reached an agreement in principle to postpone the international NOx emissions limits for new ships from 2016 to 2021. This IMO decision needs to be confirmed by vote of all Parties to MARPOL Annex VI at the next MEPC meeting in April 2014. A confirmation of this decision in April 2014 would constitute a complete u-turn by the IMO on ship emission regulations and could seriously compromise the credibility of MARPOL Annex VI. The EU and its Members States, owning collectively the world’s largest merchant fleet, need to shoulder their responsibilities and help reverse the tide at the IMO on this issue. In addition, serious consideration of the problem of shipping NOx emissions should be given in the context of the 2013 EU Year of Air.
The UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) issued a press notice regarding the tanker pollution conviction after use of satellite imagery as the primary evidence. At a hearing at Truro Magistrates Court, the owner of a tanker paid a total of £22,500 in fines and costs after pleading guilty to a breach of UK maritime pollution legislation.
The underlying principle of Port State Control procedures is that sampling and analysis of ballast water treated onboard a vessel will not be more stringent than what is currently required for the scope of type approval. Port State Control procedures will be globally implemented when the International Convention on Ballast Water Management becomes effective. Sampling and analysis of ballast water is a complex issue while ships’ inspections are also a matter of concern. Thus IMO recently issued revised guidelines on ballast water sampling for trial use as BWM.2/Circ.42.
The Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) met for its 65th session from 13 to 17 May 2013, at IMO Headquarters in London. Among others the Committee made significant progress in its work on further developing energy-efficiency regulations, adopting a MEPC Resolution on Promotion of Technical Co-operation and Transfer of Technology relating to the Improvement of Energy Efficiency of Ships and giving the go-ahead to carry out an update to the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions’ estimate for international shipping. Moreover, a draft Assembly resolution to address the implementation of the Ballast Water Management convention has been approved and approved a number of ballast water treatment systems.
While ship recycling topic suggests the end of life cycle of ships, it is in fact related to the whole life cycle of the ship. Some aspects to be considered in ship recycling are the legislative background, practical experience gained and the risks that stakeholders might face.
The subject of ports is very important along with the ships because if ports and ships do not work together, they will sink together. It is true that there is too much legislation; there are many legal aspects that both ports and ships face. They have to comply with all these International, European, National and Regional legislation and at the same time to invest in Research and Environmental Improvement and to have good relations with neighbours, local authorities and NGOs. All these result in higher costs for ports and inevitably the environment becomes a competitive factor.
Due to its dependence on fossil fuel combustion and the fact that it is one of the least regulated anthropogenic emission sources, emissions from the marine transport sector contribute significantly to air pollution and climate change. The European Environment Agency last March published a report on the impact of international shipping on European air quality. The main objective of the report was to provide a comprehensive review of recent literature and reports, taking into account expert knowledge, on the maritime transport sector. The report addresses the sector’s impact on air quality and climate forcing in Europe and the executive summary of the report is presented in this article.