Air emission trading dominated much of the discussion at the 15th meeting of the Environmental Committee in London this week. Following similar discussions at the ISTEC meeting, the Environmental Committee agreed that the principal focus of reducing air emissions from shipping in a cost effective manner was worth supporting but as yet could not see that all the potential monitoring, verification and administration concerns had been resolved.

Under the chairmanship of Vice-Chairman Mr. Dimitris Stamoudis (Ceres Hellenic) the Committee also discussed the issues relating to the forthcoming Marine and Environment Protection Committee (MEPC 48) meeting at the International Maritime Organisation (IMO). The Committee supported the concept of an interim standard for ballast water treatment and hoped that this would encourage developments in the treatment technology market. On the same issue, the Committee felt it was important to seek exemption from the Convention’s requirements for those vessels that had test equipment fitted in order to assess the effectiveness of trial technology.


On the matter of anti-fouling coatings the Committee raised concerns on the sampling criteria to be developed and were keen for INTERTANKO to maintain a watch on the developments at the IMO. The Committee also noted the progress on the IMO’s Guidelines on Ship Recycling and noted that there was good potential to coordinate some of the issues with Greenpeace, as per a discussion between the Committee and Greenpeace on the day prior to the meeting (see additional report). It was felt that there was merit in ensuring the transfer of a hazardous materials inventory when a ship changed owners. Additionally, a move towards less hazardous materials fitted on board during the life of the vessel would aid the objective of minimising the hazardous materials on-board vessels when they are finally sent for demolition.


Following a day-long meeting the Committee also reviewed and took action on the use of DNA for the tagging of oil, environmental awareness guides, inadequate port reception facilities and progress on on-going projects with environmental organisations.


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