During a ship’s lifetime microorganisms, plants, algae, or animals will gather in its hull, during a process called biofouling. These organisms, known as invasive aquatic species, can negatively affect a ship’s operation, while they also present a threat to the marine environment. However, there is a solution and is called antifouling.
MPA Singapore will ban the discharge of wash water from open-loop scrubbers, as from January 1, 2020. The ban is part of the MPA’s attempt to prepare the port ahead of the 2020 sulphur cap. In order to facilitate the implementation of the ban, Singapore will provide facilities to collect the residue generated from the operation of scrubbers.
Thailand’s first all-electric ferry recently started operation. The 40-passenger ship is part of a fleet of ferries operated by Bangkok Metropolitan Authority (BMA). It will operate on a five-kilometer route daily between Hua Lampjong and Thewes Pier.
French automobile company Renault announced the signing of a 3-year partnership with Nantes start-up Neoline, aiming to develop a wind-powered maritime transport service, and to contribute to the environmental management of its logistics chain, as nearly 60% of the Group’s parts and vehicles are transported by sea.
Canada lifted the mandatory speed restriction for vessels in the Gulf of St. Lawrence to make sure that ships can operate safely during winter. Transport Canada is not aware of any North Atlantic right whale deaths from vessel strikes this year and will ask vessels to voluntarily slow down if a whale is spotted in or near the shipping lanes.
The IMO announced the launch of a collaboration with the Global Environment Facility and the United Nations Development Programme, aiming to address the negative environmental impacts of the transfer of aquatic species through ships. The GloFouling Partnerships project is expected to drive actions to implement the IMO Guidelines for the control and management of ships’ biofouling.
According to a European Commission study, Marine Protected Areas boost the Blue Economy, as well as fisheries, aquaculture, tourism and coastal areas. The study also says that the benefits of MPAs do not obstruct the achievement of conservation objectives.
Until now, scientists believed the main source of biomass on the seafloor was the organic matter, as dead fish and plankton, that floated down towards the depths. However, now scientists from the Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh discovered that bacteria in the deepest parts of the seafloor are absorbing CO2 and could be turning themselves into an additional food source for other deep-sea life.
MOL announced that it will support three initiatives to address the issue of global warming. These are the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures; Japan Climate Initiative; and Cool Choice. These aim to contribute to global environmental conservation by developing environmental and emission-free businesses.
Six Greenpeace activists boarded Stolt Tenacity for protest purposes, a giant tanker owned by Stolt Tankers, while the vessel was underway off the west coast of Spain, in the Gulf of Cadiz, on November 17. According to Greenpeace, the captain had already been informed via VHF radio for the protest.
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