Environmental Committee 16th meeting

INTERTANKO’s Environmental Committee met for its 16th meeting last Monday at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh. The meeting was preceded by a two day course on the marine environment hosted by the University.

Vice-Chairman, Mr Bjorn Sodahl chaired the meeting which covered eleven issues concerning the tanker industry and the environment. Of particular note was the work being undertaken by Dr Paul Kingston within the School of Biological Sciences regarding the impact from the Prestige. Dr Kingston explained that several studies were underway to assess the full impact of the incident, the results of which would be accessible to the Committee at its next meeting.

On the matter of ship recycling the Committee felt that there was still extensive work to be done on the drat Guidelines being developed by the IMO and will ensure that the concerns raised would be aired at the next Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) meeting in July.

In response to a US based initiative to assess the new tin-free antifouling systems on the market the Committee agreed that alongside the effectiveness tests currently underway by a host of organisations, an assessment on the secondary toxicity of the tin-free systems would be worthwhile. This would allow owners to understand which tin-free coatings were having the greatest side effects on the marine environment and were, as a consequence likely to be banned by the IMO in the future.

Aside form the relevant issues discussed by the Committee including ballast water, tagging of oil, reception facilities and environmental awareness, administrative issues were also addressed. In particular, the members expressed their desire to fill a seat currently available on the Committee and invited interested members to contact the secretary, Tim Wilkins.

Contact:  Tim Wilkins tim.wilkins@intertanko.com