IMO NEWS 4/2010



MEPC adopts revised MARP0L Annex III


Revised MARPOL Annex III


The revised MARPOL Annex III Regulations for the

prevention of pollution by harmful substances carried

by sea in packaged form was adopted by consensus

during the session and is expected to enter into force

on I January 2O14 in order for changes to the Annex

to coincide with the next update of the mandatory

International Maritime Dangerous Goods (IMDG)

Code, specifying that goods should be shipped in

accordance with relevant provisions.


Revised MARPOL Annex V text approved


The MEPC approved, with a view to adoption at its

next session. amendments to revise and update

MARPOL Annex V Regulations for the prevention

of pollution by garbage from ships, following a

comprehensive review of this Annex.

The main changes include the updating of

definitions; the inclusion of a new requirement

specifying that discharge of all garbage into the sea

is prohibited, except as expressly provided otherwise

(the discharges permitted in certain circumstances

include food wastes, cargo residues and water used

for washing deck and external surfaces containing

cleaning agents or additives which are not harmful

to the marine environment); expansion of the

requirements for placards and garbage management

plans to fixed and floating platforms engaged in

exploration and exploitation of the sea-bed; and the

proposed addition of discharge requirements covering

animal carcasses.


Ballast Water management system approved


After consideration of the reports of the thirteenth and

fourteenth meetings of the Joint Group of Experts

on the Scientific Aspects of Marine Environment

Protection (GESAN/P) Ballast Water Working Group,

which met in May and July 2010, respectively, the

MEPC granted Final Approval to six ballast water

management systems that make use of active

substances and Basic Approval to three such


The MEPC also approved circulars on the

Framework for determining when a Basic Approval

granted to one BWMS may be applied to another

system that uses the same Active Substance or

Preparation and Guidance for Administrations on the

type-approval process for ballast water management

systems in accordance with the GB Guidelines (for

approval of ballast water management systems).

The MEPC reiterated the need for countries to

ratify the International Convention for the Control and

Management of Ships' Ballast Water and Sediments,

2004, b achieve its entry into force at the earliest

opportunity. To date, 27 States, with an aggregate

merchant shipping tonnage of 25.32 per cent of

the world total, have ratified the Convention. The

Convention will enter into force twelve months after

the date on which not fewer than 30 States, the

combined merchant fleets of which constitute not less

than 35 percent of the gross tonnage of the world's

merchant shipping' have become Parties to it.

The MEPC noted the conclusion of the Review

Group on Ballast Water Treatment Technologies

(BWRG) that, for ships with ballast water capacity up

to 5,000 cubic metres, including those constructed

in 2011 , there are sufficient technologies available to

meet the requirements of the Convention and their

number is increasing.


Emission Control Area proposal


The MEPC approved a proposal to designate certain

waters adjacent to coasts of Puerto Rico (United

States) and The Virgin lslands (United States) as

an ECA for the control of emissions of nitrogen

oxide , sulphur oxide  and particulate

matter under MARPOL Annex Vl Regulations for the

prevention of air pollution from ships and agreed to

consider the proposal for adoption at its next session.

Currently, there are two designated ECAs under

Annex V| - the Baltic Sea area and the North Sea

area _ while a third, the North American ECA, was

adopted in March 2010, with entry into force expected

in August 2011.


Recycling of ships


The MEPC continued its work on developing

guidelines intended to assist ship-recycling facilities

to commence introducing voluntary improvements to

meet the requirements of the Hong Kong International

Convention for the Safe and Environmentally Sound

Recycling of Ships, which was adopted in May 2009.

It was agreed to re-establish the intersessional

Correspondence Group on Ship Recycling to

further develop the draft Guidelines for safe and

environmentally sound ship recycling, Guidelines

for the development of the Ship Recycling Plan and

Guidelines for the authorization of Ship Recycling


The Committee encouraged Governments to

ratify the Convention, which has been signed,

subject to ratification, by five countries, and to review

the programme for technical assistance aimed at

supporting its early implementation.

Annex IV special area proposal approved

The MEPC approved draft amendments to amend

MARPOL Annex IV Prevention of pollution by sewage

from ships to include the possibility of establishing

"Special Areas" for the prevention of such pollution

and to designate The Baltic Sea as a Special Area

under this Annex. The amendments will be considered

for adoption at the next session.


Revised IAPP form supplement adopted


The MEPC adopted amendments to MABPOL Annex

Vl Regulations on the prevention of air pollution

form ships to amend the Form of Supplement to the

International Air Pollution Prevention (|APP) Certificate.

The revised form is intended to clearly and

precisely document the extent of a ship's compliance

with regulations 4 and 14 of MARPOL Annex VI

regarding sulphur oxide values, or the possibility

of using equivalent arrangements, outside or inside

an Emission Control Area (ECA) The revised form is

expected to enter into force on 1 February 2012buI

the Committee noted that Member Governments have

been invited to use the revised form of Supplement

to the |APP Certificate at the earliest possible



The MEPEC also adopted revised Guidelines for

monitoring the worldwide average sulphur content of

residual fuel oils supplied for use on board ships.


The MEPC considered a proposal submitted by

France and ltaly to designate the Strait of Bonifacio as

a Particularly Sensitive Sea Area (PSSA), and noted

that the overwhelming majority of delegations that

spoke agreed with the proposal, in principle, subject

to a review by the Technical Group on PSSAS, which

will be convened at the Committee's next session.

In the meantime, the proponents were invited to

also submit their proposals for associated protective

measures to the Sub-Committee on Safety of

Navigation for its consideration.


The MEPC considered the report of the eleventh

meeting of the OPRC HNS Technical Group, held

in the week prior to the Committee meeting, and

approved the following draft texts developed by the

Technical Group: the revised Manual on oil pollution,

Section I - Prevention and the Guidance document

on the implementation of an incident management