This group tracks the responses of shipping industry towards environmental health concerns, highlights influence of shipping companies from EU, US and Japan etc on IMO and its Marine Environment Protection Committee & South Asian governments. It is keen to restore beaches in India, Bangladesh and Pakistan to their pristine glory for the coming generations. For more information visit:,


Regressive Hong Kong Convention for Ship Dismantling to be discussed at 63rd Session of IMO's MEPC

Note: European Commission's pretence of being sensitive towards environmental and human rights stands exposed. IMO's Hong Kong International Convention for the Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships that was adopted in May 2009 is the child of ship owning companies of Europe and Japan.

The deafening silence of European NGOs has been engineered through European Commission's funding. On December 20, 2011, European Commission's head of Waste Unit informed an Indian official in Brussels that all the dead ships which come to India and other ship breaking states are illegal under European Commission's EU Waste Shipment Regulation, 2006. In order to legitimize the same, EC has plans to start the process of diluting and amending its Regulation from April 2012 onwards. This insincerity and double speak of EC reveals that EC is under tremendous influence of ship owning companies so much so that it has chosen not defend its own Regulation. It plans to downgrade its Regulation to make it compliant with yet to be born Hong Kong Convention. The fact is that the Convention is unlikely to take birth because ship breakers and environmental groups in India, Bangladesh and Pakistan are bitterly opposed to it.

EC under the influence of companies feels that it is one of the ways to support its contracting economy and prolonged recession besides secretly signing free trade agreements with developing countries like India, Bangladesh and Pakistan.

It appears that economic crisis in Europe has turned environmental NGOs there to become nationalists and compelled them pay lip service to environmental and occupational health concerns in South Asia. IMO and its master, the ships owners must be quite glad at the turn of the events.

Gopal Krishna
ToxicsWatch Alliance (TWA)

Briefing: 07, February 22, 2012

Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC), 63rd session, 27
February to 2 March 2012

Market-based measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from international
shipping will be among the key items on the agenda of the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), when it meets for its 63rd session from 27 February to 2 March 2012, at IMO Headquarters in London.

The MEPC will also discuss issues relating to the implementation of the
ship recycling and ballast water management conventions and consider the
adoption of amendments to the International Convention for the Prevention
of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL) relating to reception facilities in Small
Island Developing States.

Market-based measures to address the reduction of GHGs

The MEPC will continue to consider a number of proposals for market-based
measures (MBMs), to assist the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from
international shipping.

This follows the adoption, in July 2011, of amendments to MARPOL Annex VI
Regulations for the prevention of air pollution from ships, to add a new
chapter 4 to Annex VI on Regulations on energy efficiency for ships to make
mandatory the Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI), for new ships, and the
Ship Energy Efficiency Management Plan (SEEMP) for all ships.

The Committee will have, for its consideration, the report of an
intersessional meeting of the Working Group on GHG Emissions from Ships,
which met in March 2011 to consider suitable MBMs to reduce GHG emissions
from international shipping. This follows the submission to the MEPC of a
comprehensive report by an Expert Group, which had carried out a
feasibility study and impact assessment of several possible MBMs submitted
by Governments and observer organizations.

The inter-sessional group held an extensive exchange of views on issues
related to, among other things, the desirability of MBMs providing:
certainty in emission reductions or carbon price; revenues for mitigation,
adaptation and capacity-building activities in developing countries;
incentives for technical and operational improvements in shipping; and
offsetting opportunities.

The MEPC is expected to outline future work by the Organization on this
matter, including, as identified by the Working Group, further in-depth
examination of the impact of MBMs on world trade and sustainable
development and, in particular, the possible impacts on developing
countries as well as their consumers and industries.

The MBM proposals under review range from a contribution or levy on all CO2
emissions from international shipping or only from those ships not meeting
the EEDI requirement, via emission trading systems, to schemes based on a
ship's actual efficiency, both by design (EEDI) and operation (SEEMP).

Guidelines for the implementation of the mandatory energy efficiency

The MEPC will consider three sets of draft guidelines intended to assist in
the implementation of the Regulations on Energy Efficiency for Ships in
MARPOL Annex VI. The draft guidelines were developed by the intersessional
meeting of the Working Group on Energy Efficiency Measures for Ships, which
met in January 2012. Work on developing EEDI frameworks for those ships
that are not covered by the current EEDI formula will also be progressed.

The MEPC will also consider, with a view to adoption, an MEPC resolution on
technology transfer and the development of alternative technologies to
enable all Member States to meet the challenge of implementing the new
Chapter 4 of MARPOL Annex VI.

Air pollution from ships

The report of the Correspondence Group on the Review of the Status of the
Technological Developments to Implement the Tier III NOx Emissions Standard
will be brought to the attention of MEPC 63.

The MEPC will also continue its consideration of matters relating to the
availability of fuel oil to meet the requirements set out in MARPOL Annex

NOx technical code amendments

The MEPC will be invited to adopt draft amendments to the NOx Technical
Code 2008, relating to certification of marine diesel engines fitted with
selective catalytic reduction systems.

Amendments to MARPOL relating to regional arrangements for port reception

The MEPC will be invited to adopt draft amendments to MARPOL Annexes I, II,
IV, V and VI, aimed at enabling Small Island Developing States to comply
with requirements for port States to provide reception facilities for ship
waste through regional arrangements. Parties participating in a regional
arrangement must develop a Regional Reception Facilities Plan and provide
particulars of the identified Regional Ships Waste Reception Centres; and
particulars of those ports with only limited facilities.

MARPOL Annex V (Garbage) guidelines set for adoption

The MEPC will consider, with a view to adoption, the draft 2012 Guidelines
for the Implementation of MARPOL Annex V and draft 2012 Guidelines for the
Development of Garbage Management Plans, developed by an intersessional
correspondence group. The guidelines are intended to assist in the
implementation of the revised MARPOL Annex V Regulations for the prevention
of pollution by garbage from ships, which was adopted at

MEPC 62 in July 2011 and is expected to enter into force on 1 January 2013.

Ballast water management systems up for approval

The MEPC will consider the reports of the 18th, 19th and 20th meetings of
the Joint Group of Experts on the Scientific Aspects of Marine Environment
Protection (GESAMP) Ballast Water Working Group, which met in late 2011,
with a view to granting basic approval to four, and final approval to five,
ballast water management systems that make use of active substances.

The MEPC is expected to reiterate the need for those countries that have
not yet done so to ratify the International Convention for the Control and
Management of Ships' Ballast Water and Sediments, 2004, to achieve its
entry into force at the earliest opportunity. To date, 33 States, with an
aggregate merchant shipping tonnage of 26.46 per cent of the world total,
have ratified the Convention. The Convention will enter into force twelve
months after the date on which not fewer than 30 States, the combined
merchant fleets of which constitute not less than 35% of the gross tonnage
of the world's merchant shipping, have become Parties to it.

Recycling of ships

The MEPC is expected to consider, for adoption, draft Guidelines for safe
and environmentally sound ship recycling, and Guidelines for the authorization of ship-recycling facilities, which have been further developed by the intersessional Correspondence Group on Ship Recycling Guidelines.

These guidelines, along with the 2011 Guidelines for the development of the
Inventory of Hazardous Materials and the 2011 Guidelines for the development of the Ship Recycling Plan that were adopted by MEPC 62, are intended to assist ship-recycling facilities and shipping companies to commence introducing voluntary improvements to meet the requirements of the Hong Kong International Convention for the Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships, which was adopted in May 2009.

The MEPC will also consider the further development of draft guidelines for
survey and certification and draft guidelines for the inspection of ships
under the Hong Kong Convention.

Oil pollution response manuals to be considered for approval

The MEPC will consider, for approval, four manuals aimed at supporting
decision-making for tactical response to oil pollution incidents. The
manuals have been developed by the OPRC HNS Technical Group.

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