IMO panel tries to smooth path to 0.5% sulfur cap

JANUARY 19, 2017 — Work to support the smooth and effective implementation of the 0.5 percent global sulfur cap on marine fuel is a main focus for IMO's Sub-Committee on Pollution Prevention and Response (PPR), which is meeting this week (January 16-20) in London.

In IMO-speak, the panel "will consider what additional measures may be needed to promote consistent implementation and will report with a justification and scope for further work to the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC 71), which meets in July. The MEPC decided at its last session to implement the 0.5 percent limit from January 1, 2020."

On other matters, the panel is expected to finalize a draft code for the transport and handling of limited amounts of hazardous and noxious liquid substances in bulk in offshore support vessels; complete a "Ballast Water Management – How to do it" manual; and finalize the draft updates to the set of model training courses for oil pollution prevention, response and cooperation (OPRC model courses).

Also on the agenda: revision of guidelines for marine diesel engines fitted with selective catalytic reduction (SCR) systems to reduce NOx emissions; black carbon; requirements for high-viscosity and persistent floating substances; and the ongoing evaluation of noxious liquid substances for shipment as bulk liquids.

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