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MEPC 72 Update

By Debra DiCianna, Senior Compliance Engineer, Choice Ballast Solutions


Last week at MEPC 72 was monumental due to the adoption of the Initial IMO Strategy on reduction of Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions from ships. At the same time, the ballast water review group continued work on topics important to the type approval of ballast water management systems and implementation of the BWM Convention. At the meeting, the MEPC 72 adopted:

  • the draft amendments to regulations A-1 and D-3 of the BWM Convention to make the BWMS Code mandatory for approval of BWMS;
  • the draft amendments to regulation B-3 of the BWM Convention concerning the implementation schedule of ballast water management for ships;
  • the draft amendments to regulations E-1 and E-5 of the BWM Convention, concerning endorsements of renewal and annual surveys on the International Ballast Water Management Certificate.

MEPC 72 also:

  • Agreed that the Procedure for Approval of Ballast Water Management Systems (BWMS) that make Use of Active Substances (G9) should be revised due to the revision of the Guidelines (G8). It was also agreed that is was not necessary to make the Procedure (G9) into a code;
  • Approved a BWM circular for the experience-building phase;
  • Approved revision of BWM.2/Circ.33/Rev.1 on Guidance on scaling of ballast water management systems that maintained the importance of shipboard testing for the most vulnerable models of a BWMS;
  • Approved revision of BWM.2/Circ.43/Rev.1 on Guidance for Administrations on the type approval process for ballast water management systems due to the revisions of G8 and the Code,
  • Invited Parties to submit proposals for an amendment to regulation E-1.1.1 (i.e, initial survey) of the BWM Convention;
  • Invited proposals for the development of guidance on the validation of the compliance of individual BWMS with regulation D-2 of the BWM Convention that may include indicative testing in conjunction with their commissioning; and,
  • Invited proposals to regarding Guidance on contingency measures under the BWM Convention and inclusion in ballast water management plans.

Choice Ballast Solutions considers the commissioning of BWMS an important step to ensure a vessel has an operational BWMS. Commissioning begins with a team that has the experience in BWM to provide a full range of services from feasibility studies, 3D scanning to detailed engineering, project management and the coordination of regulatory requirements. We emphasize to our clients the need for contingency measures and assist them with various groups to ensure these matters are properly addressed.

For further information, please contact Debra DiCianna (, Senior Compliance Engineer at Choice Ballast Solutions or go to