INTERTANKO's Environmental Committee met in Barcelona

INTERTANKO's Environmental Committee met last week in Barcelona to continue its consideration and advancement of INTERTANKO's environmental agenda. Chaired by Mr. Dimitris Stamoudis of Minerva Marine, the two-day meeting considered policy issues, including ship recycling and port reception facilities, as well as environmental projects such as an onboard energy conservation programme and industry environmental best practice initiatives.


On the policy matters, the Committee considered some of the key elements related to implementation of the current draft of the IMO's Ship Recycling Convention. Survey and maintenance of the Inventory of Hazardous Materials (IHM) was considered an important operational element of the draft Convention, and ambiguities in the draft text were identified. When the IMO's Ship Recycling Working Group next meets in France in early 2008 INTERTANKO will be seeking clarity on the current survey requirements and their link with standard maintenance procedures relating to the IHM.


A more immediate matter, however, is the need to improve the provision of port reception facilities. The Committee welcomed the strong momentum on this issue at the IMO and is committed to providing information (and guidance) on the various methods for improving the adequacy and availability of port waste reception facilities. Furthermore, the Committee noted the increase in the number of members submitting inadequacy reports, but suggested that the industry as a whole must improve its commitment to this valuable information-sharing initiative. This information is vital if INTERTANKO, through the IMO and European Commission, is to ensure that the current situation improves. Developing a Guide to Good Practice as an IMO document is seen as a way in which to set the minimum standards expected of facilities by the shipping industry, with the Committee committed to developing this document for consideration by the Industry Reception Facility Forum and subsequently by the IMO's Correspondence Group on Reception Facilities.


Moving away from policy deliberations, the Committee also agreed on the development of an energy conservation initiative which would see the development of basic guidance on energy conservation practices on board. This would form the basis of a campaign to improve energy conservation, including company awareness campaigns ashore and aboard leading to guidance on training options as well as more fundamental poster campaigns.


The Committee plans to meet again in 2008 in Istanbul during the period of the INTERTANKO Annual General Meeting and Tanker Event (20-23 April 2008).


Contact: Tim Wilkins