Tackling climate change with a focus on the ever-challenging GHG emissions from ships was the focus of MEPC 77. Recognizing that the Committee needed to strengthen the existing initiative on the ‘IMO Strategy on Reduction of GHG emissions from ships’ they invited Member States and International Organizations to send revised strategies for consideration at MEPC 78.
Marine plastics was another hot topic as was the voluntary use of cleaner fuels in the Arctic region.
Ballast Water Management
In regard to ballast water management, the MEPC received an update on the experience-building phase of the BWM Convention. Feedback on BWMS usage was submitted from 35 Member States and 7 other stakeholders from approximately 15,000 ships. A full analysis report will be completed by the World Maritime University after a careful review of this information and then submitted to MEPC 78 for further discussion. In accordance with resolution MEPC.325(75) regarding the implementation of IMO commissioning testing of BWMS after the installation, it was decided that “further development of guidance on measures that may be taken when ballast water management systems encounter challenging water quality on uptake” were needed. This will also be discussed at MEPC 78.
MEPC 78 has been tentatively scheduled to take place from 6 to 10 June – it has not yet been decided if this will be a virtual or in-person event.
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