Monday, 18 December 2017

We'd like to take this opportunity to wish you, your colleagues & your families a wonderful holiday season and a healthy New Year.

Thursday, 16 November 2017


• SMM UK LTD. Quality & Guarantee for Data Integrity & Methods Used as a 3rd Party
• Developed by Qualified Naval Architects and Software Engineers
• Clarity and Transparency based on official Shipyard’s Documentation
• Capability Data Exchange with your existing IT Systems
• Lifetime After Sales Support

Wednesday, 8 November 2017



For protecting your investment against commercial as well as operational risks

Immediate Benefits:

  • Care-free Tools empowered by Clarity and Transparency based on official Shipyard’s Documentation
  • Automatic Synchronization of Data between Vessels and Office
  • Tailored to any Company’s Safety Management System
  • Lifetime After Sales Support
  • SMM UK LTD. Quality & Guarantee for Data Integrity & Methods Used

SMART provides improved efficiency of operations, judgement and communication as well as the power of Cargo Maximization by pre-calculating and avoiding cargo shortages, vessel delays and unexpected economic losses for the Ship Managers/Operators

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

New Detailed Steel Coils Loading ML Option


Typical Charterers’ quote for steel coils loading:

Please find the attached pre-stowplan for owners consideration/confirmation. Please reply ASAP.

The easiest and most advanced solution 
Our Company, as a pioneer in the Steel Coils Loading of ships since 1997, has just introduced this unique tool for easy checking / insertion of multiple types of Steel Coils in each Cargo Hold effortlessly. In one go, you can examine the maximum steel coils loading (local Strength), stowage and final loading condition (drafts, SF, BM) for Multi-port/consignments operations.

Friday, 8 September 2017


We attach herewith copy of Port Marine Notice No.120 of 2017 to update you on the implementation of the Ballast Water Management Convention (BWMC), 2004. 

The international Convention for the Control and Management of Ships Ballast Water and Sediments will enter into force on 8 September 2017. 

The Convention is applicable to ships of any type including submersibles, MODU, FSUs, FPSOs, except for the ships that meet the criteria specified in Article3.22 of the Convention. 

All ships of 400 GRT and above to which the Convention applies calling the port of Singapore are required to carry the following on board: 

  1. International Ballast Water Management Certificate (IBWMC) for ship flying the flag of countries party to the Convention; or Documentary evidence such as Statement of Compliance (SoC) for ships flying the flag of countries that are not party to the Convention;
  1. An approved Ballast Water Management Plan (BWMP); and
  1. Ballast Water Record Book (BWRB)

With effect from 8 Sep 2017, all applicable ships of 400 GT and above are required to submit the following, amongst other ship’s trading certificates, for application of Singapore Port Clearance Certificate: 

  1. International Ballast Water Management Certificate (IBWMC); or
  2. Statement of Compliance (SoC); or
  3. Documentary evidence from the Administration or the Class of the ship that the Convention does not apply

Wednesday, 6 September 2017


We are pleased to advise that a new Module of MULTILOAD loading software has been developed and now released that permits the User to send effortlessly and automatically via email the pdf short form printout of the loading condition that the User prepares and stores without requiring to follow the traditional and time demanding way of multiple steps (export -> trace file -> attach file into email).


Friday, 11 August 2017



For ALL vessels calling European Ports M.R.V. (Monitoring, Reporting & Verification) Scheme, soon will be a must.



“Part A of Annex I to Regulation (EU) 2015/757 provides that CO2 emissions should be calculated by multiplying emission factors and fuel consumption which is determined by monitoring methods A (BDN and periodic stock takes of fuel tanks), B (bunker fuel tank monitoring on board”


An indispensable tool for supporting M.R.V. monitoring methods (“A” & “B”) is SMM Bunkers Survey Software.


It is based on official shipyards documentation, guaranteed by our 30-year experience and reliability.

On receiving the following: Drafts / Heel and for each tank (Density/ Sound/ Temp) the user instantly can calculate the F.O./D.O. Reports in order to monitor the Bunkers ROB. The program includes ship's F.O./D.O. Sound/ Ullage Table and Trim/Heel corrections. Once the density laboratory determination becomes available, the User can get final Bunkers quantities adjusted automatically.

Every Bunker survey report includes comparison with Barge figures.


The user can track record of Bunkers R.O.B. quantities in every voyage, when necessary.


In every onboard use of software, automatic synchronization of data between vessel and office is effected.

Besides above automatic data/entries synchronization, there is, also, the option, the entries to be exported and imported on every installed software.

The office version as fleet based, includes the list of the whole fleet and the user can select a certain vessel in order to examine further her records.

iContainers: Freight Forwarders Should Fight Convention and Embrace Technology

iContainers: Freight Forwarders Should Fight Convention and Embrace Technology

Thursday, 3 August 2017



For chartering purposes, in case you need to issue a Dual Load Line certificate.

Our Services

We are at your disposal to check if the Class Requirements for Damage Stability for B-60 Type vessels (Vents Positions, subdivision etc.) are met and to advise the following:

1) Study for possibility for assignment of deeper draft

2) Damage Stability Assessment according to ILLC Requirements

3) Potential Strengthening of Hull, if needed

4) Addendum to Trim & Stability Booklet

Friday, 28 July 2017



In case of bunkers’ discrepancies between barges’ receipt quantities and vessel’s actual quantities.

Our Services

-       Ensure the validity of sounding/ullage tables (Measurement of Reference Point-Zero Ullage)

-       Onboard Verification

-       Remodeling of Tanks

-       Revision to Sounding/Ullage Tables

Feedback from 50 commercial shipping operators on digitalizing their business

Feedback from 50 commercial shipping operators on digitalizing their business

As part of productizing our latest product line we sat down to meet with 50 operators and mapped out their needs, ambitions, expectations and disappointments in their digitalization work. In this blog, we give a high level overview of what seems to have worked out and what often has not.
When we met with a large number of operators and asked the same questions, clear patterns started to emerge in terms of how digitalization has been approached and what challenges they encountered. The patterns were surprisingly repetitive and in the cases where things did not go as planned, it seemed like most operators were struggling and got stuck with the same challenges. In an effort to draw some useful parallels on a high level, we have to separate the ones who have made a deliberate effort towards digitalization from those who have not. We also have to separate those who feel they have been successful from those who have not. We will for sake of argument generalise a bit and divide the operators into 3 categories:
  1. Operators who have made a deliberate effort, and believe to have been successful in their digitalization of vessel operations and business. They have effectively utilized the latest technology to create real monetary value in the business. From here on we will reference to them as “satisfied operators”.
  2. Operators who made a deliberate decision to move ahead with digitalization of their operations, but after some time (often years later) still don’t believe they have had any return on the investment, or are not at all satisfied with the level of their expectations. We will reference these as “unsatisfied operators”.
  3. Operators who have showed no interest in evolving into new technology or digitalization. These operators are operating their business on traditional manual reporting, communication and record keeping such as noon reporting, telex, basic mail and spread sheets. We will reference these as “non-engaged operators”.

Why do some choose to move faster than others?

Early on in this process, we learned not to make any assumptions on what type of operator was ahead of others in their digitalization work before meeting with them. One can however in general say that two segments are reasonably far ahead compared to the rest (with some clear outliers deviating from this).
With good margin, the Cruise Industry is years ahead in implementing advanced solutions for data collection, real-time optimisation and remote monitoring. This is probably attributed to a combination of the owner-operator type long term thinking, a high level of propulsion complexity and the fact that the vessels themselves today may cost a billion USD to build. This easily justifies investing in the latest high end technology.
Thereafter, still way ahead of the rest of the cargo shipping segment, we see some container lines. It tends to be primarily the owner operated vessels that have been best equipped with real time data collection and optimization solutions. The segment as a whole has come quite far on the shore side in terms of creating Fleet Operations Centers, where the new data and the visibility it creates can be acted upon. It has however been over 10 years since the pioneers started with this setup and only now are the late ones getting up and running. It is quite interesting that there is more than a decade in spread, from the leaders to the followers in such a highly competitive and commoditized area as container shipping.
A large spread between early adopters and followers is even more visible within the wet and dry bulk segments. Often it even felt counter intuitive when meeting operators in these segments. When we first set out to map the market needs, we met with large, very reputable operators that we had assumed were very advanced in how they used technology, only to learn that some were still operating as if technology limitations were the same as 60 years ago. I can recall a great example of this, which we experienced at the end of a presentation for a well-known, large tanker operator on “dynamic speed” settings. We were told by an experienced senior shipping manager that “obviously you can’t change the RPM during the voyage,” and “we can’t mess with how things are done.” I think this comment and especially the word “can’t” is fascinating, as it communicates so many things, but mostly it shows how hard change comes in some areas.
On the other hand, we were also in many cases surprised how far some had come in their digitalization work when we were least expecting it. A good example of that, was a medium sized dry-bulk operator I met with two years ago. In this case, to my surprise, I encountered a medium age dry-bulk fleet where every technical aspect on-board was integrated and linked in real-time to a data centre on the shore side. But not only that, the data was also fed back effectively to the business side. For some reason, these guys were 5-8 years ahead of most leading large dry bulk operators, who are just now slowly moving forward.
As mentioned above, we quickly learned that we could not make any assumptions prior to meeting an operator on how far we expected them to have progressed. I don’t want to believe it is totally random, and simply a result of interest and priority of key individuals, but I struggle to see any other clear patterns of what drives the priority. It is a global business and as it would seem so are the practices on how we operate and run our business. It does seem that in some parts of the world there is a slightly larger interest or willingness in trying new ideas and testing new technology, but the variations are not huge and there are outliers from both camps in all parts of the world. The only clear correlation we can see seems to be the age of decision makers. It would seem that those who grew up with computers versus having had to go through the process of learning about them later in life, were more willing to naturally turn to them to improve processes.

So why have some operators succeeded and gotten so far ahead of others?

It is really difficult from an outside perspective to point out causation here but for sure there are some very clear correlations when looking at the “satisfied operators” as a group. In general, we tend to see:
  1. A strong engagement and interest from top management to move ahead with technology to support the business. One can argue some strong, competent, key individuals may have applied heavy influence but in the end it seems it’s only when top management gets on-board with a long term commitment that things pan out to deliver real returns.
  2. Involvement from subject matter experts who have done similar work before. They may be in-house staff, external consultants or suppliers. Digitalization of vessel operations is uncharted territory for most anyway so the project team has to have some idea from the start on what will and will not work. In almost every case where I have met “satisfied operators,” I have quickly realized there was staff involved who had previous experience.
  3. Digitalization in the terms of what we are now looking at cannot be run as a normal IT project and then considered ticked off as done. When real value has been derived through digitalization of the business, the business seems to have been actively involved and engaged throughout the project. Setting up a small team (often as a side-job), sending them off to run a project over 6 months as traditionally often done, never seems to have worked out well for anybody that I have met. Especially if the end goal is developing an in-house solution that is expected to do everything and tick all boxes at once. Solutions need to be developed with a circular reference (active feedback) organically through and with the business.
  4. An appropriate timeline is given to execute, i.e. one needs to get at this sooner rather than later. It might seem obvious that those who started early have often come quite far, granted efforts have been kept up, but interestingly this is often not realized. Moving from Shipping to Tech, I quickly learned that in development “9 women cannot make a baby in one month”. It simply does not matter how much resources you pour into a development project, especially if it is about collecting and processing data. You will need a certain time for each step you move ahead. Not realizing this and applying an unrealistic project timeline, will simply result in an insufficient end solution or a project with no monetary return. It is worth noting here that developing successful solutions from scratch takes years and yet you very often meet operators who claim they will do it in 6 months.

What are the most typical situations where the operator is not satisfied?

Getting stuck is easy and there are many reasons for things not working out that aren’t always obvious so we can’t claim to capture full causation as much as illustrating situations often encountered among “unsatisfied operators”. However, typical situations we often noted would include:
  1. “We did this years ago, we now have all this data, but it’s so broken we can’t do anything with it.” This was, and still is, a very common situation we meet when visiting potential customers. It is frustrating because it is very hard to step up at this point and help out in cleaning up the data. We are productising a solution where we will be able to assist the customer with their own data sets but productising this capability has taken us a very long time due to its complexity. In short, what typically has happened is that a project has been set up to capture data through auto-logging on-board and then sent ashore to a data warehouse. From this, one has also mapped out what reporting is needed for the business and developed that part. Once the system goes live it is quickly concluded that the data quality on the raw data from the vessel is of such bad quality that it is not fit to support the business. Building a data centre in-between that can validate, filter, repair and enrich the data, (the most expensive and difficult part to develop) tends to have not been part of the project. In most cases it was simply overlooked on an assumption that data from the vessels, especially if from an auto-logging method, would always be accurate.
  2. Failure to appoint project teams that can and will take the time to engage. Regardless if an internal solution is developed or if the project is relying on external providers, it is essential that the project identifies and delivers on the businesses needs and requirements. This will simply not happen if the project team is left to guess what is needed without circular reference with the business. Our CTO once gave me some very good advice on product development: “if you fail to communicate the needs of the business to the developers, they will still go off and develop something, just not what you need.” I think it was well put and now I have seen it myself too many times when listening to staff at operators. Often management will never know as the shipping industry don’t have a very good culture in allowing for “failing fast”, moving on and rectifying when these things happen. Rather, it ends up as a system nobody uses and the users are instead blamed for creating work-around’s and not following directions.
  3. “We spent a lot of money to build this system years ago so we are done.” I am not sure who would use a 10-year-old mobile phone or a 15-year-old PC meanwhile an on-board reporting solution and reporting interface is somehow often considered to be up-to-date after a decade. The base problem here is that so much money was sunk into the solution that even if they would prefer to move over to something more modern off the shelf it can’t be justified internally.
  4. “Not invented here” – was a concept quoted to me by a head of a Scandinavian shipping line. What he was jokingly trying to say was that we all believe that what “we” do is unique, and therefore we can’t possibly buy solutions off the shelf. It seems common to believe that “we need” custom solutions because what “we do” is so different. On this note I can mention that I have seen a good 15-20 variations of in-house, manual ship-to-shore reporting solutions that basically are doing the same thing.

Why some operators chose to not engage at all in digitalization?

One could argue the choice to do nothing in most cases have not been an active choice rather than a result of not giving it any attention. Nevertheless, in speaking with operators who have chosen to retain fully manual traditional ways of working, there are few recurring statements we often hear as justification:
  1. “What we do is so complex that you can’t automate it.” I would argue that here that there is often a huge misunderstanding of what system tools are meant to do, as well as an under-estimation of what is technically possible.
  2. “Our operations are very different from how others do it so we can’t make solutions for that.” This statement will often come from wet and dry -bulk operators justifying it with “that they are not operating liner services”. From an outside perspective, meeting with a large number of similar operators, this seems to be one of the most standardized areas where a high level of automation should be totally feasible. We simply all seem to believe that what we do is unique.
  3. “We will let others pave the way, and get on-board when it’s well tested.” This may very well be a safe strategy but it is a clear benefit in getting started in time, simply as the change process is slow. It may also be an expensive one if it leads to a period of operational disadvantage in a chase to the lowest cost base.

Some concluding thoughts

If one aims to simply automate existing processes that are already executed (albeit manually), the only financial upside is the man-hours you save from no longer doing the labour. These savings are small and not that relevant in most shipping operations. It seems in comparison, that most traditional internal IT projects have often been run to streamline a business process and reduce manual labour, rather than setting up an environment where yet unknown “operational waste” can be identified and acted upon. Agreeably this is not an absolute truth, but the point here is that a different mode needs to be in place as real monetary upside will only come with doing things not already done. This requires engagement from the business over time with top management committed and not just handed off as a side project for a small team to execute in a few months.
Huge breakthrough comes in tiny steps through the power of incrementalism, i.e. many small marginal gains over time. We all like a dramatic story but change doesn’t happen out of the blue – it is a process that needs to be managed. Expectations of big bang successes and magic bullets need to be managed in order for people to want to stay with the process until the returns are showing.

Monday, 17 July 2017

Inefficient use of navigational tools leads to grounding

On May 2016, the US-flagged lake freighter (laker) Roger Blough ran aground near the Gros Cap Reefs Light, off Sault Sainte Marie, Ontario, Canada. There were no injuries and no pollution reported, but the vessel sustained $4.5 million in damage to its hull and cargo system. The US NTSB issued an investigation report on the accident, providing a description of what happened.

The incident 

On May 26, 2016, the Roger Blough departed Superior, Wisconsin, en route to Conneaut, Ohio, a voyage of 890 miles. The vessel was loaded with a cargo of 45,093 tons of taconite iron ore pellets. The vessel’s intended route, which was programmed into the ship’s electronic chart precise integrated navigation system (ECPINS), closely followed the Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA) recommended downbound trackline for Lake Superior.

On the same day, the Canadian-flagged laker Tim S. Dool, in ballast, lost all electrical power and propulsion approximately 65 miles northwest of Whitefish Point in eastern Lake Superior (about 89.5 miles from Gros Cap Reefs Light). Two tugboats, the Anglian Lady and the W. I. Scott Purvis, were contracted tow the Tim S. Dool to a repair facility in Sault Sainte Marie, Ontario, Canada. The lead tug, Anglian Lady, took the Tim S. Dool under tow and began transiting at 5 knots.

At 1130 the next day, when the Roger Blough was about 24.5 miles from Gros Cap Reefs Light, the second mate and an able seaman took over the laker’s normal navigational watch as deck watch officer and wheelsman, respectively. The second mate held a merchant mariner credential for unlimited mate on Great Lakes and inland waters, with a first-class pilot’s endorsement, and had sailed on the lakes for 17 years in both licensed and unlicensed positions.

During the watch turnover, the second mate was informed that the Tim S. Dool was being towed by the Anglian Lady and was about 5 miles from Gros Cap Reefs Light, making a speed of about 5 mph. Fog was prevalent throughout the area, and thus fog signals were sounded and an extra lookout was posted on the bow.
At 1138, the Roger Blough second mate called Vessel Traffic Service (VTS) St. Marys River (SOO Traffic) on VHF radio about one-hour before entering the VTS area to make a mandatory voice position report (pre-call). VTS St. Marys River advised him that the Anglian Lady tow was about 4.9 miles from Gros Cap Reefs Light. The VTS watchstander told the second mate that he did not know if the Roger Blough would be able to overtake the tow.
At 1211, the Roger Blough second mate hailed the Anglian Lady master and proposed to overtake the tow. The Anglian Lady master agreed. Soon after this communication, the downbound laker Sam Laud, following behind the Roger Blough, hailed the Anglian Lady and proposed to overtake the tow in the same way as the Roger Blough.
At 1230, the second mate directed the wheelsman to make a course change from 148 degrees to 140 degrees, per the LCA recommended downbound trackline, and to “hold the red buoy [left] side of the channel” in anticipation of passing the Anglian Lady tow. The wheelsman took the steering control out of autopilot, made the course change in hand steering, and then placed the steering back in to autopilot. About this time, the fog dissipated and visibility improved.

The Roger Blough was making full “sea speed” of 113 revolutions per minute (RPM), approximately 14.5 mph, and was about 10 miles behind the Anglian Lady tow, which was continuing to make a speed of about 5 mph. All vessels were on the LCA recommended downbound route toward the St. Marys River navigation channel.

The master of the Roger Blough held a merchant mariner credential for unlimited master on Great Lakes and inland waters, with a first-class pilot’s endorsement, had sailed on the lakes for 28 years in both licensed and unlicensed positions, and had been the vessel’s permanent master for seven years. Crewmembers told investigators and the second mate acknowledged that the master had given verbal instructions to the mates to reduce speed to 100 RPM (about 13.5 mph speed through the water) when the vessel was two miles north of Gros Cap Reefs Light. Then, when the vessel was abreast of Gros Cap Reefs Light, the RPM were to be reduced to 90 RPM (about 11.5 mph).

At 1232, the second mate called the Anglian Lady and arrangements were confirmed for the Roger Blough to overtake the Anglian Lady and its tow in the Birch Point Course section of the St. Marys River. The Anglian Lady was to keep its tow to the right of the channel and the Roger Blough would pass on the left side of the channel. The second mate positioned the Roger Blough to enter the Birch Point Course lined-up on the far-left side of the channel. Two minutes later, the W. I. Scott Purvis met the Anglian Lady tow near Gros Cap Reefs Light and made-up to the Tim S. Dool’s stern.

At 1305, the master of the Roger Blough and an observing captain entered the wheelhouse. While the observing captain went to the aft port side of the wheelhouse to get a cup of coffee, the master went to use the ship’s phone on the aft starboard side to confirm delivery of provisions as the vessel passed Sault Sainte Marie, Michigan.

At 1310, the Anglian Lady and its tow were about a third of the way down the Birch Point Course channel, between green buoys 39 and 37, moving slowly from the center to the right side of the channel. The tow was on a course of about 140 degrees at a speed of about 6.1 mph.

At the same time, according to ECPINS and automatic identification system (AIS) data, the Roger Blough’s centerline was on the outer edge of the left side of the channel, with its port side outside the channel. The vessel was on a course of 140 degrees true at a speed through the water of 14.4 mph when the its speed began to slow. At 1312, the Roger Blough passed over a charted 30-foot depth curve near the Gros Cap Reefs. About this time, the vessel hit the bottom.

The Roger Blough’s heading shifted about 8 degrees to port as the vessel continued to move forward for two minutes, dragging the hull an additional ship-length over the reef’s bedrock until the vessel came to rest.

Probable Cause

The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of the grounding of the lake freighter Roger Blough was the second mate’s failure to use all navigational resources to determine the ship’s position as it approached shallow water near Gros Cap Reefs. Contributing to the accident was inadequate monitoring of the vessel by Vessel Traffic Service (VTS) St. Marys River.

Friday, 14 July 2017

Add Deck Cargo to your Bulker for Increased Operational Flexibility - Improving your ship’s profitability by carrying cargo on deck

If your Bulk Carrier by design is not yet approved to carry deck cargo we are at your disposal to perform the necessary studies and get them approved by Class.

Our approach involves:

  • Discussion with owners about market requirements
  • Define class requirements for all necessary documentation that needs to be submitted to Class for approval
  • Final agreement with owners for the project details                          

Tuesday, 11 July 2017

IMO MEPC 71 outcome

IMO MEPC 71 took place from Monday 3 through Friday 7 July 2017, in London. under the Chairmanship of Mr Arsenio Domingues (Panama) and his Vice-Chair, Mr Hideako Saito (Japan). This was the last meeting before entry into force of the BWM Convention for which important changes adopted regarding the implementation dates. 

Two Working Groups (WG), one Drafting Group (DG), one Review Group (RG) and one Technical Group (TG) were formed and chaired as follows:

·         WG1    Air pollution and energy efficiency, Mr K Yoshida (Japan)

·         WG2    Reduction of GHG emissions from ships, Mr S Oftedal (Norway)

·         DG1    Amendments to mandatory instruments, Mr H Steinbock (Germany)

·         RG1    Ballast water management, Mr C Wiley (Canada)

·         TG1     PSSAs, Mrs A Makinen (Finland)

The meeting was attended by representatives from 98 Member States, plus 2 Associates, 3 UN and Special Agencies, 8 Inter-Governmental and 50 Non-Governmental organisations.

The Secretary General, Mr Ki Tack Lim, welcomed everyone, reminding that this year’s IMO theme “Connecting Ships, Ports and People” fits neatly with the IMO’s goal of actively working towards the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. He also noted that shipping needs to be regulated on a global basis such that no-one is allowed to gain advantage either by cutting corners or by imposing unilateral requirements.

The Secretary General welcomed the good progress made by the Intersessional Working Group on Reduction of GHG Emissions from ships which will enable the development of an initial ‘IMO GHG Strategy’. In a similar vein, following confirmation of the global limit of the sulphur content of ships’ fuel, there exists the major task of ‘Consistent implementation of regulation 14.1.3 of MARPOL Annex VI’ for the Committee to discuss.

Mr Lim also reminded delegates that this session will be the last MEPC meeting before entry into force of the BWM Convention for which several important tasks still exist. These include draft amendments to the Convention, most notably on regulation B-3 on the implementation schedule for  installation of BWM systems, the Code for approval of BWM systems and finalisation of the manual ‘Ballast Water Management – How to do it’.  He mentioned several other items requiring attention, namely designation of the Baltic Sea and the North Sea Emission Control Areas for Nox Tier III control, one final and two proposed PSSAs and finally, approval of a set of updated OPRC Model Training Courses.

Amendments to mandatory instruments

Following Plenary discussion, DG1 was formed.  Its report back to the Committee was subsequently approved in general, and in particular, the Committee:

·         adopted draft amendments to MARPOL Annex VI related to the designation of the Baltic Sea and the North Sea Emission Control Areas for NOx Tier III emission control and to appendix V of MARPOL Annex VI concerning information to be included in the bunker delivery note, together with its associated MEPC resolution;

·         noted that, whilst the format of the information provided in the bunker delivery note, notably the checkboxes, gives the impression that it should be used as a template of the declaration but this is not the case

·         agreed that the entry-into-force date of some minor amendments to Annex VI of MARPOL should be 1 January 2019.

Harmful acquatic organisms in ballast water

It was recalled that the BWM Convention will enter into force on 8 September 2017, currently signed up to by 60 Contracting Governments, representing 68.45% of world tonnage. A total of 49 documents were submitted under this agenda item leading to protracted discussions in Plenary.  This was necessary in order to frame precise terms of reference for the well-attended Ballast Water Review Group (RG1), whose findings were approved in general by the Committee, and in particular:

·         endorsed the GESAMP-BWWG recommendations as to when BWM systems using drinking water should seek approval in accordance with Procedure (G9);

·         endorsed revised ‘Methodology for information gathering and conduct of GESAMP-BWWG work’, to be disseminated as a BWM Circular;

·         agreed that the revised Methodology should be applied to all submissions for Basic Approval at MEPC 74 and onwards, and subsequent submissions for Final Approval of those systems;

·         requested GESAMP-BWWG to specify recommended amendments to Procedure (G9) consequential to the review of Guidelines (G8);

·         approved the draft Code for approval of BWM systems (BWMS Code) and draft MEPC Resolution for adoption at MEPC 72;

·         approved related draft amendments to Regulations A-1 and D-3 of the BWMC making the Code mandatory;

·         approved Guidance on contingency measures under the BWMC, to be disseminated as a BWM.2 circular;

·         noted agreement within RG1 that Guidelines (G4) should be reviewed as part of the experience-building phase associated with the BWMC;

·         approved a draft circular on Application of the BWMC to ships operating in sea areas where BW exchange i.a.w. regulations B-4.1 and D-1 is not possible;

·         approved a draft unified interpretation (UI) of the ‘Date installed’ in relation to ‘Methods of BWM used’ in the appendix to the International BWM Certificate (in principle, until after the in force date);

·         adopted a draft MEPC resolution on the 2017 Guidelines for ballast water exchange (G6);

·         approved revised Guidance on entry or re-entry of ships into exclusive operation within waters under the jurisdiction of a single Party, requesting the Secretariat to issue as a Circular;

·         adopted a draft MEPC resolution on the 2017 Guidelines for risk assessment under regulation A-4 of the BWMC (G7);

·         approved the finalised manual ‘Ballast Water management – How to do it’ for publication;

·         adopted an MEPC resolution on ‘The experience-building phase associated with the BWMC; and

·         requested the Secretariat to assess the cost of the data gathering and analysis plan for the experience-building phase, informing MEPC 72.

InterManager joined forces with InterCargo requesting a revision to Regulation B-3 of the proposed amended scheme for the BWMC, where for existing ships only and those fitted with gravity discharge topside tanks, the use of ‘extended ballast water exchange’ could be used for these tanks only, with the remaining BW treated by a BW treatment system to be fitted on all existing vessels in any case. Following a debate of satisfactory length, the vote on which was pretty evenly divided, the Chairman reluctantly ruled that our proposal relates to operational matters and interpreting regulations D-1 and D-2 of the BWMC, rather than the implementation timeline set out in regulation B-3.  However, it was felt that a more detailed proposal containing a draft UI should ideally be submitted to PPR 5 for consideration.

Detailed information on the agreements regarding BWT systems may be found here.

Air pollution and energy efficiency 

Following Plenary discussion on the outcome of sub-committee PPR 4, which included Black Carbon (Arctic), Exhaust Gas recirculation (EGR) bleed off water, best practice for fuel oil purchasers and users, also Member State/Coastal State, ozone depleting substances, Sulphur monitoring, UIs on engine test cycles and fuel oil samples, terms of reference were given to WG1 on Air Pollution and Energy Efficiency whose subsequent report was in general approved by the Committee, and which the Committee also:

·         noted WG1’s discussion on draft best practice for fuel oil purchasers/users;

·         invited further consideration of draft best practice for fuel oil purchasers/users at MEPC 72;

·         noted WG1’s discussion on reference parameters for ro-ro cargo and ro-ro passenger ships including DWT threshold values for large size ships;

·         agreed amendments to regulation 21 of MARPOL Annex VI regarding EEDI requirements for ro-ro cargo/passenger ships with a view to adoption at MEPC 72;

·         noted WG1’s discussion on EEDI reduction requirements and correction factors for ice class ships;

·         endorsed the timeline for a Correspondence Group (CG) to work on EEDI review beyond phase 2 and that one of the items proposed in document MEPC 71/5/2 should be dealt with in discussing minimum propulsion power for ships;

·         established a CG on EEDI review beyond phase 2;

·         endorsed the lack of need to amend the regulation related to a major conversion under Chapter 4 of MARPOL Annex VI;

·         adopted the 2017 guidelines for Administrative verification of ship fuel oil consumption data and associated MEPC resolution;

·         adopted the 2017 Guidelines for the Development and management of the IMO Ship Fuel Oil Consumption Database together with associated MEPC resolution;

·         endorsed development of the IMO Ship Fuel Oil Consumption Database, including data reporting format and submission, data validation and cross-referencing, granularity and anonymity of data, database access and data available to users, data analysis and export, alerts and Administration contact person and designation of ice class;

·         approved a draft MEPC Circular on submission of data to the IMO data collection system of fuel oil consumption data from a ship NOT entitled to fly the flag of a Party to MARPOL Annex VI;
noted the discussion on offshore and marine contracting vessels, including data submission to the IMO Ship Fuel Oil Consumption Database,

·         data analysis stage and an appropriate transport proxy for these types of vessels;

·         invited all, in cooperation with IMCA, to submit proposals for guidance on how to deal with offshore and marine contracting vessels under the IMO data collection system;

·         noted the outcome of discussions on a proxy for transport work for cruise passenger ships and also, that WG1 had agreed to keep proposed amendments to the 2016 SEEMP Guidelines in abeyance

·         agreed to consider proposed amendments to the 2016 Guidelines for the development of a Ship Energy Efficiency Plan (SEEMP) at a future session of the Committee.

Reduction of GHG emissions from ships

It was recalled that MEPC 70 had approved ‘The Roadmap for developing a comprehensive IMO Strategy on the reduction of GHG emissions from ships (the Roadmap) and that C 117 had agreed to establish two meetings of an intersessional working group (ISWG) in 2017, the first in the week preceding MEPC 71 and the other from 23 to 27 October.  At its inaugural meeting, ISWG-GHG1 took note of elements specifically identified to be considered under the Roadmap, including a list of candidate measures.

Having briefly discussed in Plenary, UNFCCC matters and proposals on GHG emission reduction of ships, the Committee established WG2, instructing it to:

·         develop an outline for the structure of the draft initial IMO Strategy on reduction of GHG emissions from ships;

·         further consider how to progress such reduction; and

·         prepare Terms of Reference for the second and third ISWG meetings on GHG.

Having considered the report of WG2, the Committee approved it in general and noted the draft outline for the structure of the initial IMO Strategy on reduction of GHG emissions from ships, as follows:

·         Preamble/introduction/context including emission scenarios

·         Vision

·         Levels of ambition

Guiding principles

·         List of candidate short-, mid- and long-term further measures with possible timelines and their impact on States Barriers and supportive measures, capacity building and technical cooperation; R&D

·         Follow-up actions towards development of the revised Strategy

·         Periodic review of the Strategy

Identification and protection of special areas and PSSAs.

·         The Committee established a Technical Group (TG1) on PSSAs and following their report, approved it in general, and in particular:
adopted the draft MEPC resolution on designating the Tubbataha Reefs National Park (TRNP) as a Particularly Sensitive Sea Area (PSSA);

·         noted TG1’s discussion regarding the proposal to designate Pulan Kukup (Kukup Island) and Tanjing Piai (Cape Piai) parks as a PSSA.

Pollution Prevention and response

The Committee approved, in general, the report of PPR 4 (Pollution Prevention and Response Sub-Committee) and took action as follows:

1.     endorsed the ‘Evaluation of Products’;

2.     endorsed the evaluation of cleaning additives;

3.     approved, in principle, a draft revised chapter 21 of the IBC Code, pending finalisation of revised chapters 17 and 18 of the Code, for simultaneous circulation with a view to adoption’

4.     in considering the OSV Chemical Code, agreed to delete the words “only those offshore related” at the beginning of para for reasons of clarity, and

5.     approved OPRC (Oil Pollution Preparedness, Response and Cooperation) model training courses as set out in document PPR4/21/Add.2 and PPR4/21/Add.3 (PPR4/21Annex7), and requested the Secretariat to carry out final editing and publish the courses through the IMO Publishing Service.