A new guide to the Ballast Water Convention
Danish Shipping launches a new guide regarding the implementation of the Ballast Water Management Convention, which will enter into force on 8 September 2017.
In a few days, the Ballast Water Management Convention will enter into force. In future all new built ships must be equipped with a ballast water treatment system. For existing ships, systems must be installed as from 8 September 2019 to 8 September 2024.
The Convention shall ensure that no invasive species such as zebra mussels and the North American comb jellyfish are transported in the ballast water of the ships from waters in one region to another.
But the new rules are complex, and there are a number of conditions that officers have to cope with in order to avoid problems in relation with for example port state inspections. Today, existing ships must comply with the convention, and this means, for example, that the ballast water must be changed on the journey if a treatment system is not installed. The ships must also be equipped with a certificate and approved ship-specific ballast water management manual, and the officers must be familiar with different local requirements, such as the American special rules.
Therefore, Danish Shipping has prepared a guide – The Little Blue Book on Ballast Water – which should make it easier and more manageable to comply with the rules of the convention. The guide is intended to be on board the ships, so the crew can seek information when needed.
“We frequently receive questions from our members about how the convention will be implemented in practice. Since it is a wholly new legislation, there are a number of factors to which particular attention should be paid as well as many questions to be clarified. We have therefore made a brief and clear guide that helps the shipping companies to handle the task in order to avoid problems when inspected by the port authorities,” says Per Winther Christensen, Head of Technical Affairs of Danish Shipping.
The project is supported by the Danish Maritime Fund and is being prepared by the consulting company Litehauz. The guide can be downloaded below and is widely available to both Danish and international shipping companies and authorities.
The Little Blue Book on Ballast Water can be downloaded here
New dates for BWTS implementation
10 july 2017
The IMO’s MEPC Committee have agreed amendments to Regulation B-3 of the Ballast Water Management (BWM) Convention, entering into force on 8 September 2017, to implement a new schedule for the D-2 requirements (i.e. ballast water treatment), according to Lloyd’s Register. The changes supersede the implementation schedule contained within IMO Res. A.1088(28).
Under the convention, all applicable ships over 400gt are required to have Certification, confirming compliance with, as a minimum, the D-1 (i.e. ballast water exchange) requirements of the BWM Convention, prior to entry into force on 8 September 2017.

New Ships
The requirements are unchanged. That is, ships constructed (keel lay date) on or after 8 September 2017, to which the Convention applies, will be required to be fitted with a ballast water treatment system at delivery.

Existing Ships
The amendments delay the treatment system mandatory installation schedule for two years after entry into force of the Convention, giving vessels 2 to 7 years from entry into force before needing to fit a treatment system, depending on their IOPP renewal survey dates. Ships, constructed (keel lay date) before 8 September 2017, are required to be fitted with BWTS:
·         No later than the first IOPP renewal survey on or after 8 September 2017. Providing that this survey takes place on or after 8 September 2019; or that the vessel has undertaken an IOPP renewal survey on or after 8 September 2014 but prior to 8 September 2017.
This means that, if the completion date of the vessel’s last IOPP renewal survey was between 8 Sept 2014 and 7 Sept 2017, then treatment system installation is required at the next IOPP renewal survey on or after 8 Sept 2017.
·         No later than the second IOPP renewal survey on or after 8 September 2017. Providing that the first  IOPP renewal survey on or after 8 September 2017 takes place before 8 September 2019, and the vessel has not undertaken an IOPP renewal survey on or after 8 September 2014 but prior to 8 September 2017.
Putting it in simpler terms, if the completion date of the last IOPP renewal survey was between 8 Sept 2012 and 7 Sept 2014, then BWTS installation is required at the second IOPP renewal survey on or after 8 Sept 2017.
Existing Ships (without IOPP surveys)
Ships constructed (keel lay date) before 8 September 2017, to which the BWM Convention applies, which are not subject to Marpol Annex I surveys (i.e. oil tankers <150gt, and other ships <400gt), a ballast water treatment system is required to be fitted to vessels from the date decided by the Administration, but not later than 8 September 2024.
However, it is noted that the Convention does not normally apply to:
·         ships not carrying ballast water,
·         domestic ships,
·         ships that only operate in waters under the jurisdiction of one party and on the high seas,
·         warships, naval auxiliary or other ships owned or operated by a state (although states are encouraged to adopt appropriate measures to ensure that the ships act in a manner consistent with the Convention), or
·         permanent ballast water in sealed tanks on ships, which is not subject to discharge.
Please note that if your ship(s) trade to/from USA, the applicable USCG treatment system implementation schedule is unaffected by these changes, and in many cases is the more onerous regime.
Ballast water treatment systems at a glance
21 july 2017
With the ratification of the Ballast Water Management Convention, shipowners are pressed to decide which treatment systems to choose. For manufacturers keen to be selected, attaining type approval by the U.S. Coast Guard can be a deciding factor. DNV GL provides comprehensive review on the issue.
For operators with vessels that discharge ballast water in international waters, the BWM Convention, entering into force on 8 September 2017, means that they must have a treatment system installed on their vessels within five years. The specific deadline depends on the next renewal survey of a vessel’s International Oil Pollution Prevention (IOPP) certificate.
For many operators trying to decide which type of system to install, one of the most important questions is: Does the system meet the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) requirements? In late 2016, the manufacturers Alfa Laval, Optimarin and OceanSaver became the first to be awarded U.S. Coast Guard type approval certificates for their ballast water treatment systems.
The USCG officially appointed DNV GL as an Independent Laboratory (IL) to perform type approval testing of ballast water treatment systems (BWTS) in 2013. There are now five “Independent Laboratory” accreditations for BWTS.
DNV GL has completed land-based testing cycles for four further manufacturers. Successfully passing land-based testing is a good indication that the systems could also meet the U.S. Coast Guard’s requirements, once they have undergone shipboard testing.“Land-based testing really challenges the efficacy of the systems. In 15 test cycles, they expose the systems to 1,000 times more large organisms and ten times more medium-sized organisms than shipboard testing. If all goes to plan, another four systems could be approved in the first half of 2018.” Martin Olofsson, Senior Principal Engineer, Environmental Protection DNV GL – Maritime Approval of Ship Systems and Components said.
DNV GL cites a series of factors for choosing the best-suited treatment system:
·         What ship type is it?
·         Does the vessel operate in fresh or brackish water?
·         Does it primarily sail in cold or temperate waters?
·         Will the system have to work in high-turbidity conditions, meaning water that contains a lot of clay, algae or silt?
All these questions are very important for making the right choice. The five treatment systems which already hold or are soon expected to hold a USCG type approval certificate include UV systems, electrolytic systems and chemical injection systems.
Astrolabe icebreaker equipped with Bio-Sea system
31 july 2017
French-based maker Bio-Sea announced that the 72 meters long icebreaker of 2,600 tones, The Astrolabe, is equipped with one of its treatment systems, which is IMO type-approved and currently in process for acquiring the USCG type-approval.
The ship was baptized on July, 12th 2017, in Concarneau Piriou shipyards’ in attendance of Mrs Annick Girardin, the French overseas Minister. Astrolabe was built by Piriou shipyards from Concarneau and it is currenlty in Brest harbour for a month.
It is going to get new military equipments, carry out some tests and train the crew before leaving from mid-August towards the Reunion island and then, towards Australia from October, where it will carry out its 1st mission. This new polar logistic vessel will be armed by the French Navy and it will proceed to monitoring and protecting missions in the French EEZs in the Indian Ocean and in the Antartic Ocean from October 2017 to March 2018.
Bio-Sea will supply a Bio-Sea 90 ballast water treatment system. The company is said to have a close relationship with Piriou shipyards, therefore, it has already equiped many ships with its solutions. Its BWTS combines mechanical filtration and UV-C disinfection, without any chemical treatment, Bio-Sea said.
Furthermore, the Astrolabe is equipped with four IMO Tier III certified 8-cylinder Wärtsilä 20 diesel engines  be fully compliant with the IMO Tier III exhaust emission regulations set out in Annex VI of the MARPOL 73/78 convention. 
-Çinli Sun Rui USCG onaylı BalColorBWMS tip onaylı sertifikayı almıştır.-9 haziran 2017
Minerva Marine signs agreement with Ecochlor
19 april 2017
Greek-based Minerva Marine has signed an agreement with Ecochlor BWTS provider for the potential supply of its systems to company’s fleet in accordance to the IMO and USCG implementation plan.
Ecochlor claims that its systems have been selected for retrofit in up to 30 Minerva’s managed bulkers and tankers, varying in size from MRs to VLCCs. The BWTS vendor has recently applied for USCG Type Approval while it has selected DNV GL as Independent Laboratory in order to secure DNV GL classification society approval, simultaneously with USCG Type Approval. So far, only three BWT Systems have been granted type approval by Optimarin, Alfa Laval and OceanSaver.
Minerva says it continually strives to meet and exceed all environmental standards with the IMO and US Coast Guard and anticipates Ecochlor will receive the USCG Type Approval.
“Minerva has a due diligence plan in place for BWT installation and compliance.. The Ecochlor BWTS, known for its efficacy in all water types, low power and flexible installations, were key conditions in their decision,” commented Tom Perlich, Founder and President of Ecochlor.
According to Ecochlor, its BWT system is not impaired by variations in water salinity, temperature, turbidity, organics or vibration and does not need neutralization at ballast water discharge. The price and size of a chlorine dioxide generator does not vary greatly based on flow rate.
ERMA FIRST becomes the first full flow electrolysis BWTS vendor worldwide that filed its type approval application to the USCG on Tuesday, 11th of April, 2017.
ERMA FIRST Submits Final USCG Type Approval Application
ERMA FIRST FIT BWTS, being type approved by IMO and several classes, has remained without any changes or modifications throughout the USCG type approval process. Mr. Konstantinos Stampedakis Managing Director of ERMA FIRST stated, “It has been a long and demanding journey towards the USCG Type Approval and having submitted the application amongst the first, proves our ability to deliver a high quality and well-designed BWTS but also justifies the efforts and methodical work of our team of experts towards this objective”.
The system performed perfectly in a variety of challenging marine environments during the tests in Morocco, Spain, Netherlands, France, New York and Savannah. The testing period lasted 30 months having finished in autumn 2016. Tested at three water salinities, ERMA FIRST BWTS offers a reliable, simple and effective solution for all types and sizes of vessels. The smooth testing process proves that the system has been carefully designed, developed and engineered so as to undergo the most rigorous testing and ensure reliable operation in challenging natural water conditions.
Mr. Stampedakis also commented, “Our extensive knowledge and experience enables ERMA FIRST to provide with a superior BWTS that fully meets our customers’ needs. This reflects well on our testing results that meet and even exceed USCG criteria”. ERMA FIRST BWTS is flexible, modular and project-specific suitable for all special installation requirements in both new builds as well as retrofit projects. ERMA FIRST’s design simplicity and expertise on delivering challenging projects, has been well acknowledged by many ship-owners and operators who have already trusted the company with their retrofit installations.
The next certification step will be the application for IMO Type Approval according to the revised G8 Guidelines. This is planned for early summer 2017.

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