ABS has published a Guide for shipowners seeking to obtain its optional class notations ENVIRO and ENVIRO+ denoting adherence to enhanced standards for environmental protection. The standards are contained in the recently released ABS Guide for the Environmental Protection Notation for Vessels. They include procedures and requirements for ballast water and sewage management, anti-fouling applications, airborne pollutant discharges, fuel oil and the use of exhaust gas cleaning systems, refrigerants and the Green Passport for ship recycling.
To further assist shipowners to keep pace with the steady flow of new environmentally-oriented regulations, ABS has brought together a dedicated group of individuals, each with particular knowledge and experience in these differing areas, within its Technology department. They will be contributing to an increased schedule of free, environmentally-related seminars to be held around the world in the coming months. “With this new Guide for the ENVIRO and ENVIRO+ notations, ABS is providing owners with a clear, internationally recognized credential that can be used to demonstrate their commitment to operating with minimum adverse impact on the environment,” says Yoshi Ozaki, Director, ABS Environmental Technology Group.
The ENVIRO notation integrates ABS requirements with those needed for compliance with international conventions, principally MARPOL, Ballast Water Management and Ship Recycling. For the ENVIRO+ notation, the Guide establishes more stringent criteria related to design characteristics, management and support systems as well as discharges to water and air.
The new ABS standards and notations replace those contained in the earlier ABS Guide for the Class Notation Environmental Safety (ES), first issued in 2001. “Technological advances and regulatory changes have contributed to a much more rigorous environmental framework that has developed in the last few years,” says Ozaki. “The new Guide takes those into account.”
According to Kirsi Tikka, ABS Vice President, Global Technology and Business Development, the environmental sector is now very fluid with further changes, particularly relating to emissions, expected to come from deliberations at the IMO and in regional and local regulatory initiatives. “It can be daunting for an owner to keep pace with these requirements and with the equipment that is being developed to assist with compliance. Our new organizational structure and enhanced capability in this area is designed to help lighten that burden for them,” she adds.
The new ABS Guide is for the use of designers, builders, shipowners and operators in the marine industry and specifies the ABS requirements and criteria for obtaining the two notations. Compliance with the applicable requirements of Annexes I, II, IV, V and VI to the International Maritime Organization (IMO) MARPOL Convention is a prerequisite of obtaining both the ENVIRO and ENVIRO+ notations.
ABS plans to hold more than 20 environmental seminars worldwide this year on environmental topics including ballast water, recycling, Annex VI, greenhouse gases and low sulfur fuels.