London: Confusion surrounding the entry into force date of MEPC 227(64), the amended regulation governing ship wastewater discharge overboard requirements, could see some shipowners falling foul of the new rules.
Mark Beavis, the managing director of ACO Marine, a supplier of MEPC.227(64) compliant wastewater treatment systems, believes that any further delay from the IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) in formally announcing a new date will create further confusion.
Beavis tells Maritime CEO: “It has been suggested that the postponement was due to a lack of reception facilities at the Baltic ports, but my understanding is that MEPC will convene in April to consider the geographical definition of a special area along with the effective dates. The requirements outside the special areas are now in force.
“However, I can appreciate the difficulties that enhanced reception facilities might create for the Baltic States involved, but the vessels need not always use such facilities if they have fully approved 227(64) treatment systems that are tested also to the section 4.2 of the new MEPC rule.
ACO Marine has worked hard over the last three years to develop a solution in time for the original January 2016 deadline and Beavis says it is “frustrating” that he might see shipowners delaying installation and procurement of these systems while they wait for IMO to make a decision.
“That there is a lack of awareness is not a surprise, IMO is notoriously poor at putting this information into the public domain in a way that is easily accessible and their website is difficult to navigate,” Beavis complains.
Established 15 years ago, ACO Marine is a member of the international German-headquartered ACO Group and a supplier of advanced wastewater treatment systems to the global commercial, naval, offshore and leisure marine sectors.