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Tuesday, December 12, 2017

INTERTANKO CALLS FOR REASONED AND PRACTICAL SOLUTION TO IMO DISCUSSIONS ON SINGLE HULL TANKER PHASE-OUTS

The Council of the International Association of Independent Tankers Owners has called on IMO delegates meeting in London next week to agree a single hull tanker phaseout schedule which is reasoned and practical. The INTERTANKO position was endorsed by the Council at is Autumn 2000 meeting in Oslo on 27-28 September 2000.

The subject of single hull tanker phase outs is being discussed at the 45th Session of IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC 45) in London on 2-6 October 2000. The European Commission’s proposals on the accelerated phase out of single hull tankers was the most controversial of a series of three initiatives it launched in the immediate aftermath of the sinking of the tanker Erika last December. As a result of lobbying by a number of governments and industry bodies, including INTERTANKO, the EC agreed to pursue its proposals through IMO rather than introduce its measures solely as a regulation for EU member states. However, the danger of regional action being taken in Europe remains, should IMO fail to agree a solution deemed to be acceptable.

The initial EC proposal has reached IMO, slightly modified, in the form of a joint submission from France, Belgium and Germany. This and several other initial proposals call for the accelerated phase out of single hull tankers according to a schedule the world shipbuilding and scrapping industries could face problems in meeting if oil deliveries to global markets are to continue at current levels. As the Figure 1 below shows, the French/German/Belgian proposal would create peaks in demand for new tonnage which need to be smoothed out.  The INTERTANKO submission to MEPC 45 is in the nature of an information paper, with comments to the various proposals for single hull phase out.   INTERTANKO supports an open discussion of the various proposals at IMO, leading to a reasonable and practical solution, and the Association has contributed extensive data to ensure that a final decision is based on comprehensive and accurate information.  The INTERTANKO proposal calls for entire phase-out to be gradually achieved, in a controlled manner, over the period 2010-2015, in a timetable which aligns, generally, with that specified in the US Oil Pollution Act (OPA 90) requirements for the phase-in of double hull tankers. These and other proposals will be considered at MEPC 45, and it is expected that IMO will finalise the issue at MEPC 46 in April 2001.

The main thrust of INTERTANKO’s submission is that there are other measures that also need to be considered when addressing tanker accidents, and not only single hull phase out.  Tanker safety depends on a rather of factors, including a quality commitment on the part of all participants in the industry.  INTERTANKO also supports the concept of rigorous casualty investigations prior to the promulgation of the new regulations to ensure the regulatory regime evolves in line with industry’s true needs. In addition, the standard of ship inspections needs to be carried out to a uniformly high standard. 

For further information, please contact:

Svein Ringbakken, Managing Director
E-mail: LegalandDocumentary@intertanko.com
Tel: +47 22 12 26 50  Mobile: +47 92 49 61 17

The total membership fleet of INTERTANKO is 2067 tankers with a total tonnage of 162 million dwt, equivalent to 70 per cent of independently owned tanker tonnage worldwide. Ownership of this diverse fleet of tankers is spread amongst 260 owners in 45 countries worldwide. INTERTANKO also has 302 Associate Members.

FIGURE 1

 

The joint French/German/Belgian proposal to IMO on the phaseout of single hull tankers would concentrate the removal of ships in a manner in which the world’s shipyards would be unable to cope.  The flow of oil to world markets would be severely disrupted.

 

FIGURE 2

Under The French/German/Belgian proposal, it is estimated that the deficit of tanker tonnage would be some 60 mill dwt by end 2002 and decline gradually to 2007 when the MARPOL ships will be phased out and the deficit will reach 70 mill dwt again by the end of the year.