In the following article, Capt. Siddharth Mahajan, Loss Prevention Executive Asia, Singapore, at the Gard P&I Club, discusses challenges associated with the use of scrubbers as one of the two most popular options for compliance with IMO 2020 and shares preventive recommendations for scrubber-related breakdowns.
MPA Singapore published an advisory to help Singapore-registered ships to operate safely and prevent pollution during installation and operation of scrubbers. The advisory shares observations from shipboard inspections carried out by Flag State and Port State Control, and documents best practices.
Steamship Mutual has gathered all the crucial information needed in light of the upcoming 2020 sulphur cap, as many are the issues that may arise and some guidance will be helpful. The Club notes that this is not a comprehensive checklist, but a summary of the steps that have to be taken so that shipowners are fully compliant with the future regulations.
According to IMO, exhaust gas scrubbers are a compliant method to reduce vessels’ sulphur emissions and ensuring compliance with MARPOL Annex VI. Yet, some coastal states and ports have implemented local regulations with stricter measures that either restrict or prohibit the discharge of washwater from open loop scrubbers or prohibit the use of scrubbers, according to Gard.
Panama Canal announced that open loop scrubbers are banned from the area under the condition that the vessels are equipped with a type approved closed-loop exhaust gas cleaning system. The Panama Canal has been added to the list of ports and regions that ban the use of open loop scrubbers.
In light of scrubber malfunction issues that have arose, MEPC 74 committed to investigate the environmental impacts of EGCS liquid effluents by adding a new item on their agenda, called ‘Evaluation and harmonization of rules and guidance on the discharge of liquid effluents from EGCS into waters, including conditions and areas’, which will be evaluated on the next PPR.
Maersk Tankers announced that its pools are ready for scrubber-fitted vessels to trade alongside vessels that will use alternative fuels for compliance with the upcoming sulphur cap, in a bid to maintain a fair distribution. The company uses its proprietary methodology Bunker Adjustment to distribute payments.
Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri hosted a keel laying ceremony in Monfalcone for the ‘MSC Seashore’, the the first of two enriched “Seaside Evo” Class ships for MSC Cruises. When it enters into service in June 2021, the ship will be the company’s longest ship, featuring 339 metres and environmental technology.
MPC Container Ships has informed that it will take a balanced approach to the sulphur oxide emissions regulation. This will be done by operating 58 vessels on compliant fuel, while retrofitting 10 ships with exhaust gas cleaning systems (scrubbers).
Shipowners, operators and charterers face technical, commercial and legal challenges in the run-up to the IMO’s January 2020 sulphur cap. In the following article, Ian Short, a Campbell Johnston Clark partner, explains some essential contractual precautions.
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