MEPC 63 Outcome

On the sixty-third session of the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC 63) that took place from 27 February 2012 to 2 March 2012 the following have been discussed/decided.

MARPOL Annexes I, II, IV, V, and VI amendments have been adopted, aiming to enable Small Islands Developing States to comply with requirements regarding reception facilities for ship waste through regional arrangements. The amendments are expected to enter into force on 1 August 2013.

The NOx Technical Code has been amended to permit separate certification of the diesel engine and the Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) System (technology able to comply with Tier III requirements). The amendments are expected to enter into force on 1 August 2013.

Ballast Water Management Convention: three basic approvals and six final approvals were granted to Ballast Water Management Systems using active substances. Currently, the number of systems given final approval by the IMO has increase to twenty-six. Regarding the Ballast Water Management Convention it should be noted that currently  35 countries, representing 27.95% of the world’s merchant shipping tonnage have ratified the Convention. The Ballast Water Management Convention will enter into force 12 months after ratification by 30 states, representing thirty-five percent (35%) of the aggregate global merchant shipping tonnage.

IACS and the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS), submitted a document raising questions about the feasibility of some of the Ballast Water Management Convention requirements, countermeasures have also been discussed. A number of countries have supported the establishment of a framework which would enable the issuance of certificates even before the Convention enters into force.

It was confirmed that Ballast Management Plans approved in accordance with resolutions A.868(20) are also valid.

Regarding e ballast water management technology Japan provided documents on the current installation status of ballast water management systems and proposed that an appropriate review should be conducted based on the understanding that the ballast water management systems are not smoothly installed. As a result, it was agreed to put forward the collection and analysis of the data collected from Member States based on the Japanese proposal.

Regarding Ship Recycling Convention details of guidelines for ship recycling facilities have been examined. Four draft guidelines have been discussed:

  1. “Guidelines for safe and environmentally sound ship recycling”. The guidelines have been adopted
  2. “Guidelines for the authorization of ship recycling facilities”. The guidelines have been adopted
  3. “Guidelines for survey and certification”: Ongoing. To be discussed by the correspondence group and submitted to MEPC 64
  4. “Guidelines for PSC”: Ongoing. To be discussed by the correspondence group and submitted to MEPC 64

IMO is working on Market Based Measures (MBM), such as the introduction of special bunker levies and emissions trading schemes to supplement the technical and operational measures for achieving the GHG emission reductions required by the amended MARPOL Annex VI. In order to narrow down the number of Market Based Measures proposed by member states, the Chairman of the MEPC suggested to carry out assessments of the impact of such measures on developing countries with respect to the implementation of these measures.

Source: IMO, NKK

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