• 2018 April 26 14:49

    IMO takes first step toward Arctic HFO ban, but first needs to define ‘HFO’

    The IMO has agreed to start work to develop a ban on the use and carriage of heavy fuel oil (HFO) for combustion purposes by ships in Arctic waters, but first it needs to define what is meant by ‘HFO’ as it isn’t clear what type of fuel the ban might apply to, IBIA said in its press release. Fuel blends complying with the upcoming 0.50% sulphur limit may contain both distillate and HFO blend components, so it will be critical to have a clear definition.

    The decision was made at the 72nd session of the IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC 72), following majority support for a ban under the agenda item on “Development of measures to reduce risks of use and carriage of heavy fuel oil as fuel by ships in Arctic waters” which was added to the organisation’s work programme at MEPC 71.

    A group of countries put forward a proposal to MEPC 72 to ban HFO use and carriage for use as fuel by all ships to which MARPOL applies when operating in Arctic waters no later than 2021, with a five-year delay in implementation for ships that have fuel tank protections in place. The ban would not apply to HFO carried as cargo.

    Such a ban was resisted by some countries which were ready to identify measures to reduce and mitigate the risk HFO fuel spills, but not a carriage ban. There was also discussion on the potential impact of such a ban on maritime trade, in particular on Arctic communities and economies. MEPC 72 agreed that this should be assessed before adopting a future ban.

    MEPC 72 agreed on the scope of work for the Sub-committee on Pollution Prevention and Response (PPR), which meets for 6th session in February 2019. PPR 6 has been tasked to develop a definition of HFO; prepare a set of guidelines on mitigation measures to reduce risks of use and carriage of heavy fuel oil as fuel by ships in Arctic waters; and on the basis of an assessment of the impacts, develop a ban on HFO for use and carriage as fuel by ships in Arctic waters, on an appropriate timescale.

    What is ‘HFO’?
    It has been widely reported that the use and carriage of HFO is already banned in the Antarctic (including as cargo). This is not strictly speaking correct: the Antarctic ban in Regulation 43 of MARPOL Annex I applies to heavy grade oil (HGO), which is defined as follows:
    .1 crude oils having a density at 15°C higher than 900 kg/m3 ;
    .2 oils, other than crude oils, having a density at 15°C higher than 900 kg/m3 or a kinematic viscosity at 50°C higher than 180 mm2/s; or
    .3 bitumen, tar and their emulsions

    PPR 6 has been instructed to take Regulation 43 of MARPOL Annex I into account when developing a definition of HFO. The key would be .2 in Regulation 43 (above).

    For bunker fuels, the current HGO ban in the Antarctic would not apply to products with a density at 15°C below 900 kg/m3 or a kinematic viscosity at 50°C below 180 cSt.

    This means all the grades meeting current ISO 8217 marine distillate (DM) specifications would be allowed for carriage and use in the Antarctic, while residual grades (RM) have a maximum density limit under ISO 8217 in excess of 900 kg/m3, which would not be allowed.

    However, a number of RM grades sold today are below 180 cSt and it is possible that, despite a density limit above 900 kg/m3 at 15°C, some of these fuels could in fact have densities below this threshold.

    With extensive blending of various components to meet the 0.50% sulphur limit in 2020, it is anticipated that many products will have viscosity below 180 cSt. Density may also be lower than we see for most RM grades today, though most fuels designated as RM grades would most likely have densities above the 900 kg/m3 at 15°C threshold.

    If the IMO agrees to use the current HGO definition for the Antarctic ban to define what constitutes ‘HFO’, density would become the key differentiator between fuels that can be used globally, including the Polar regions, and fuel that cannot be used or carried for use in the Arctic.




2020 August 6

16:36 Nevsky Shipyard launches the Pavel Leonov, last ship of PV22 series duo
16:15 North Sea Port, Flemish Waterways plc, Port of Antwerp, Port of Oostende, Port of Zeebrugge, the Agency for Maritime and Coastal Services, and the Joint Nautical Management to introduce SWINg in 2021
15:43 Zelenodolsk Shipyard to host tomorrow launching and keel-laying ceremonies
15:41 Maritime Autonomous Surface Ships Port Network was established in Singapore
14:27 MABUX Bunker Weekly Review
13:54 Tolyattii bound heavylift project cargo successfully handled at Port Bronka
13:27 Alaska Marine Lines rail barges upgrade ballast systems
12:46 Davie confirms polar leadership with icebreaker launch
12:35 Transit container transport by RZD network soars 30% in Jan-Jul
11:40 CMA CGM to launch its ever-faster service connecting Spain with Algeria
11:35 Carnival Cruise Line joins industrywide pause in U.S. through October 31
10:18 Shell signs charter contracts for six newbuild LNG carriers
10:15 Fourth IMO Greenhouse Gas Study: Shipping emissions are projected to increase by up to 50% until 2050, relative to 2018
09:58 The Flemish government, Port of Antwerp and SeReAnt together improve the water quality at the Port of Antwerp
09:26 Baltic Dry Index as of Aug 5
09:21 Crude futures prices resume climb
09:10 MABUX: Bunker market this morning, Aug 06
08:11 NYK starts operation of its first finished-car logistics terminal in Japan

2020 August 5

18:57 Valenciaport triples air quality control cabins
18:16 U.S. Coast Guard suspends search for missing spearfisher off Maui
18:04 Port of Helsinki turnover decreased by 26.7% to EUR 33.4 million in January–June 2020
17:35 A delegation of the Port of Gdansk visits Klaipeda
17:06 Voluntary ship slowdown through Swiftsure Bank begins August 1
16:49 Mississippi River will get deeper
16:39 MOL introduces FOCUS Project Part Ⅲ: Virtual Ship Visit Application 'Fleet Tour'
16:29 Admiralty Shipyards starts building fourth CT-192 series trawler the Kapitan Martynov
15:27 Solstad secures contract from BP for three vessels in Australia
14:38 ABS to class first Taiwan-built offshore installation vessel
13:22 Hurtigruten temporarily suspends all expedition cruises
13:18 Krasnoye Sormovo to launch the MS Pola Marina cargo ship on August 7
13:12 The Vostochnaya Stevedoring Company completes the upgrade of more than 18,000m2 of storage yard
13:08 Concept of a modular composite fishing boat gets the thumbs up from MARINET
12:39 Scorpio Bulkers to build Wind Turbine Installation Vessel (WTIV) at DEME
12:01 Fincantieri and Saipem sign deep-seabed mining agreement
11:58 MARINET expects draft amendments on autonomous shipping to Russia’s MSC to be submitted by the end of the month
11:13 Future 12th expeditionary fast transport (EPF 12) for US Navy successfully completes acceptance trials
11:06 SEA-KIT bags two USV orders from Fugro
10:51 Indian Register of Shipping launches vessel for Unichart Navigation
10:23 Baltic Dry Index as of Aug 4
10:18 Crude futures prices remain nearly flat
09:51 MABUX: Bunker market this morning, Aug 05
09:07 EMSA, ECDC release guidance on resuming safe cruise operations in EU

2020 August 4

18:36 UK publishes Guidance on financial sanctions for Maritime Industry
18:21 Avance Gas sells 2003-built VLGC Avance
17:45 Klaveness Combination Carriers takes delivery of the fourth CLEANBU vessel
17:03 Tallink Grupp publishes July 2020 passenger and cargo statistics
16:58 ADNOC L&S and Wanhua Chemical Group form Strategic Shipping Joint Venture
16:33 Dredging of Utrenny LNG terminal’s basin kicked off
16:02 MHI-MME receives generator turbine and VOC firing auxiliary boiler orders for shuttle tankers
15:51 Flag, coastal and port authorities from eight countries come together to encourage development of maritime autonomous surface ships
15:43 Port of Ust-Luga MRC’ priority is taking care of employees
14:50 NOVATEK’s transshipment terminal in Port of Ust-Luga undergoes overhaul
14:02 Stena Line starts new service Liepaja - Karlskrona - Travemünde
13:26 MRA sets its sights on distance training
13:12 DEME repatriates 75 Philippine crew members from 12 vessels worldwide by charter flight from Brussels South to Manila
12:15 Evergreen joins the Ship Recycling Transparency Initiative
11:07 The port of Kiel starts the Cruise Season 2020
10:22 Bunker sales in Vladivostok in Jan-Jul plummet 30%
09:36 Baltic Dry Index as of Aug 3
09:30 Crude oil futures become cheaper