Kostas G. Vlachos, Chief Operating Officer, CMM (Consolidated Marine Management) has responded to GREEN4SEA questions regarding the progress made in environmental issues within the 2016 stressing the need for a cooperation between EU and IMO in order to find a sound solution for the issue of shipping emissions as soon as possible. Mr Vlachos highlights that IMO should be the only one proper forum where a world wide industry matter can be discussed in proper way for reaching a sound solution for the shipping industry.
GREEN4SEA: Do you think there was a significant success and/or progress made with respect to marine environment protection during 2016? Focusing on your area of expertise, what were the most important industry developments within 2016?
Kostas Vlachos: The most important progress made with respect to marine environment was the ratification of BWMC . The minimum requirements in regards of the number of countries that was necessary to ratify the convention and the minimum percentage of the world tonnage succeeded and therefore the convention comes into force the next year. I do not know if this is a success but certainly it is a progress that will create a challenge for the shipping industry. This progress along with the first given approval from USCG to the first BWT are the most important industry developments within 2016.
G4S: Focusing on your area of expertise, what do you think that it will be the biggest marine environmental challenge(s) for the industry for the 2017?
K.V.: As I replied above the first challenge will be the implementation of the BWMC on September 7th 2017. The second big challenge will be the preparation by August 2017 of MRV plan within the framework of the European Union legislation. These two big challenges will change in the future the face of the shipping industry with the more eco-design vessels to acquire a step ahead in comparison with the rest of existing vessels. The expectation of alignment of the EU requirements in MRV with IMO data collection must be done the soonest possible for the benefit of the industry.
G4S: What would be the 2017 resolutions for your company/ organization? What are your goals and aspirations to enhance environmental excellence? Do you have any new projects on the pipeline and/or plans for 2017 that you would like to share?
K.V.: My company in 2017 participated in an Environmental Excellence benchmarking led by a Recognized classification society. Based on this benchmarking my company holds a lead position and therefore my challenge in 2017 is to improve even more the performance and certainly to try to fill in the gaps identified in the benchmarking in relation to other two leading companies. On the other hand the big project for my company is the completion of LPGreen design for a VLGC 84,000 m3 where my company participates along with HHI, DNV-GL, Wartsilla, and MAN. The purpose of this project is to develop a saving energy design that will use the cargo as propulsion means.
G4S: What is your overall forecast for the marine environmental developments in 2017 and what would you like to share and/or wish and/or ask other industry stakeholders?
K.V.: My forecast for the shipping industry in 2017 in regards to the environment is the unilateral development by European union of ETS system for the CO2 emissions. My wish on that matter is all the industry stakeholders to try and combine their forces with the aim such a system to be discussed only in the IMO which is the only one proper forum where a world wide industry matter can be discussed in proper way for reaching a sound solution for the shipping industry.
The views presented hereabove are only those of the author and not necessarily those of GREEN4SEA and are for information sharing and discussion purposes only.