Not Logged In, Login,

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

European Union adopts new regulation for single-hull tankers

The Council of the European Union, (in this case the Agricultural and Fisheries Ministers) adopted yesterday (22 July) a new European regulation regarding the phase-out of single-hull tankers, the Condition Assessment Scheme and a ban on the transport of heavy grades of oil on single-hull tankers. The new Regulation will take effect late September/early October.

The new Regulation, which is an amendment to the existing EC Regulation 417/2002, will have to be signed formally by the President of the European Parliament. This will probably take place in early September. The Regulation will then be published in the Official Journal, and will take effect 20 days thereafter, i.e. late September/early October 2003.

The Council adopted the amendment to the Regulation without debate, and thus the text should be identical to the one adopted by the European Parliament on 4 July.

In other words, the decision by the Council does not reflect what was agreed or progressed at MEPC last week.

One of the open questions is whether the European Union will amend the new 2003 version of Regulation 417 after the IMO assembly, presumably in December, adopts revisions to MARPOL. This could in theory be done in either of the following ways:

  • For changes of substance there would be a need for a new round of formal amendments to Regulation 417 proposed by the Commission and duly adopted by both the European Parliament and Council
  • Articles 10 and 11 for Regulation 417 allow for amendments through a Committee to take into account decisions made by the IMO, in so far as such amendments do not broaden the scope of Regulation 417.

The new amended Regulation will take effect for all the Member States of the European Union and of the European Economic Agreement. It will also take effect for the Accession Countries (the Czech Republic, Cyprus, Estonia, Hungary, Poland, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Slovak Republic, and Slovenia) when they become full members of the European Union in May 2004, unless there are national rules for earlier implementation of EU measures.

We will see the following effects in 2003 in all Member States of the European Union and the European Economic Agreement:

  • All Category 1 tankers delivered in or before 1980 will as from end of September/early October lose the right to fly the flag of these countries, nor will such tankers be permitted to enter or leave ports or offshore installations or anchor in areas under the jurisdiction of these Member States. (For category 1 tankers delivered in 1981, the final year will be 2004; and 2005 for those delivered in 1982 or later.)
  • All Category 2 and 3 tankers delivered in 1975 or earlier will as from end of September/early October be denied the right to fly the flag of these countries, nor will such tankers be permitted to enter or leave ports or offshore installations or anchor in areas under the jurisdiction of these Member States.
  • No single-hull tanker, regardless of flag, will as from end of September/early October be permitted to enter or leave ports or offshore installations or anchor in areas under the jurisdiction of these Member States if carrying heavy grades of oil.
  • As from 2005, all Category 2 and 3 tankers over 15 years of age will have to have passed CAS in order to either fly the flag of these Member States, or – regardless of flag – be permitted to enter or leave ports or offshore installations or anchor in areas under the jurisdiction of these Member States.

There are exemptions for tankers below 5,000 dwt and for ice strengthened tankers. Furthermore, the Regulation will include definitions of the term ‘heavy grades of oil’ and ‘double hulls’. These important details will be seen from the text adopted by the Council yesterday amending Regulation 417.  The text of the Council decision can be seen at
 
Word format: Click here for download.
 
PDF format: Click here for download. 

Contact: Kristian R. Fuglesang