Thursday, April 18, 2013

Both Bulk and Container Freight and Passenger Shipping Need Ballast Water Treatment Approval

List of Acceptable Systems Granted Temporary Status by US Coast Guard
Shipping News Feature

US – One of the complexities associated with any form of regulation for container and other pan ocean freight and passenger vessels is that, even with the imposition of international legislation, acceptance by one state of another’s recognition for new standards is not always automatic. No country is more wary of the new controls being imposed for both atmospheric and water borne shipping emissions than America and now the US Coast Guard has announced the names of foreign ballast water treatment systems(BTWS) that have been accepted for use, albeit temporarily.

Alternate Management Systems (AMS) are those which the Coast Guard has deemed fit for purpose as they have received approval from an alien administration. Use of a BWTS as an AMS is subject to the general and specific conditions and requirements listed in the AMS acceptance letter which has been issued to the system’s manufacturer. This gets over the problem of a foreign ship discharging its ballast water, having been efficiently treated, yet falling foul of local laws.

An AMS Certification allows for a system to be used for up to five years giving the manufacturer time to have its product tested both ashore and at sea as is required by the US authorities and receiving full approval for use. A complete list of acceptable systems can be seen HERE.

For manufacturers and distributors seeking further information on how to obtain an AMS acceptance from the Coast Guard use the Coast Guard's Environmental Standards Division's website.

Photo: Two invading predatory cercopagid cladocerans Cercopagis pengoi and Bythotrephes longimanus which have changed the life balance in Lake Michigan. Courtesy of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.