The IMO MARPOL Annex VI entered into force on May 19th this year. These regulations imply that ships will have to either use low sulphur heavy fuel oil (LSHFO) or exhaust gas SOx cleaning when opertating inside sulphur control areas (Baltic fr om 2006, North Sea from 2007). This represents a major challenge for the whole marine industry, the refinery industry, the bunker brokers, the ship operators as well as the maritime authorities.
As response to the sulphur regulations, MARINTEK, Norwegian Ship-owners? Association and partners from the marine industry have established a ?Forum for Reducing Sulphur Emissions from Shipping.
The overall objective is to enhance the competitiveness of Norwegian ship operators through a cost effecti ve and liable adaptation, and to limit the negative side-effects of the use of Low Sulphur Heavy Fuel Oils (LSHFO).
Four specific issues will be adressed
1. Develop and propose fuel quality criteria to supplement current criteria that are less applicabl e to current bunker fuels qualities, especially some LSHFO
2. Accumulate, analyze and communicate early operational experience through systematic tests on different LSHFO onboard test ships and through active trouble case investigation
3. Develop and prop ose criteria for exhaust scrubber wash water discharge, and for wash water monitoring, and challenge further hinderances to the use of SOx scrubbers
4. Investigate and qualify performance of equipment for continuous monitoring of ships exhaust sulphur and NOx emissions
Use of results:
The fuel criteria will be introduces to the industry through CIMAC, the world wide organzation for large diesel engine industry.
Operational experience will be reported through the forum. Results regarding exhaust gas measu rements and washwater criteria will be forwarded the IMO MEPC Working Group responsible for the revision of the ?Guidelines for exhaust gas-SOx cleaning systems - MARPOL Annex VI, regulation 14(4)(B)