Key Highlights of IMO Sub-Committee on Pollution Prevention

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Credits: Marek Piwnicki/Unsplash

The IMO Sub-Committee on Pollution Prevention and Response (PPR) held its 10th session from April 24 to 28, 2023.

ABS has provided a brief to inform of the matters discussed and overview of the more significant issues progressed at this session which include matters pertaining to new guidelines for Thermal Waste Treatment Devices, new standards of precision and reliability for Ballast Water Compliance Monitoring Devices, development of regulations governing the Transport of Plastic Pellets to prevent losses at sea and new guidance to account for controlled anti-fouling systems in the Inventory of Hazardous Materials.

While new regulations developed by the PPR Sub-Committee are not finalized until approved by the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC), a review of the Sub-Committee’s activity can provide a forecast of future regulatory developments.

Key developments

  • New 2023 Guidelines for Thermal Waste Treatment Devices (TWTD)
  • Verification of Ballast Water Compliance Monitoring Devices
  • Inventory of Hazardous Materials – Cybutryne
  • Developing Guidance on Transport of Plastic Pellets by Container or in Bulk
  • Evaluation of Products and Cleaning Additives

Prevention of air pollution from ships

  • Reduction of the Impact of Emissions of Black Carbon from International Shipping
  • Standards for Shipboard Gasification of Waste Systems and Associated Amendments to Regulation 16 of MARPOL Annex VI
  • Revision of Regulation 13.2.2 of MARPOL Annex VI to Clarify that a Marine Diesel Engine Replacing a Boiler Shall Be Considered a Replacement Engine
  • Unified Interpretation to Provisions of IMO Environment-Related Conventions (Proposed Amendments to Unified Interpretations to MARPOL Annex VI)
  • Draft Amendments to the 2019 Guidelines for On Board Sampling for the Verification of the Sulphur Content of the Fuel Oil Used on Board Ships (MEPC.1/Circ.864/Rev.1)
  • Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) Emissions

Marine biosafety

  • Review of the 2011 Guidelines for the Control and Management of Ship’s Biofouling (Resolution MEPC.207(62))
  • Protocol for Verification of Ballast Water Compliance Monitoring Devices
    Unified Interpretation for the “Date of construction” on the IBWMC and application of D-2 standard after a ship has undergone a major conversion
  • Guidelines for the Development of the Inventory Hazardous Materials

Pollution prevention and response

  • Draft Operational Guide on the Response to Spills of Hazardous and Noxious Substances (HNS)
  • Review of the IBTS Guidelines and Amendments to the IOPP Certificate and Oil Record Book
  • Development of Measures to Reduce Risks of Use and Carriage of Heavy Fuel Oil as Fuel by Ships in Arctic Waters

Marine plastic litter from ships

  • Maritime Transport of Plastic Pellets in Freight Containers
  • Preventing Shipment of Plastic Pellets in Bulk
  • Reporting the Loss or Discharge of Fishing Gear
  • Draft Guidelines on Clean-Up of Plastic Pellets from Ship-Source Spills

Evaluation of safety and pollution hazards of chemicals

  • Provisional Categorization of Liquid Substances in Accordance with MARPOL Annex II and the IBC Code (MEPC.2 Circular) – Evaluation of Products and Cleaning Additives
  • Draft Amendments to PPR.1/Circ.7 – Decisions With Regard to the Categorization and Classification of Products
  • Draft Amendments to MEPC.1/Circ.590 – Revised Tank Cleaning Additives Guidance Note and Reporting Form

Other developments

Draft Amendments to MARPOL Annex IV – Lifetime Performance of Sewage Treatment Plants

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Source: Safety4sea