7/6/2018: Recap of Coast Guard remarks during Korea Maritime Week

group photo of all participants in ballast water forum

Director of Inspections and Compliance for the U.S. Coast Guard Capt. Jennifer Williams had the opportunity to address about 250 members of the international shipping community last month during Korea Maritime Week. The purpose of the three-day event, held in Busan and Seoul, was to provide an opportunity for members of the international maritime community to discuss policy trends related to emerging issues such as implementation of the Ballast Water Convention, big data, autonomous surface ships, e-navigation, and cybersecurity.

Williams was part of a three-part Ballast Water Forum session titled “Challenges and tasks for the smooth implementation of the Ballast Water Convention” chaired by Mr. Sok-hun Kim with the Korea Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries. The panel emphasized the importance of managing ballast water globally, with an eye toward shared challenges and shared vision. Other panel members included Capt. Daknashamoorthy Ganasen from Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore, and Dr. Peter Stoutjeskijk with Australia’s Dept. of Agriculture and Water Resources.

Williams’s remarks centered on how the U.S. Coast Guard is shifting away from issuing ballast water compliance extensions and is instead focusing more on compliance and enforcement.

“With nine U.S. Coast Guard type-approved systems currently available and 10 more under review, we are being much more conservative about issuing extensions to vessels,” Williams said, first acknowledging the many complexities associated with the ballast water systems. “We encourage operators to install and train their crews to use and trouble shoot the systems well in advance of visiting a U.S. port.”

Williams said the Coast Guard anticipates mechanical and operational issues as more and more vessels install and use the equipment. However, Williams also stressed the importance for the ship’s operators to contact the nearest Captain of the Port to discuss contingency plans as soon as possible when those issues arise.

“If these discussions occur with enough advance notice, it is possible to avoid penalties and operational delays,” Williams said.

For more information about Korea Maritime Week, visit the event website. To learn more from the U.S. Coast Guard about ballast water management and compliance, read our previous Maritime Commons posts:

2017 five-part ballast water series:

Part 5: Contingency planning for ballast water management
Part 4: The “plug and play” ballast water management system
Part 3: Coast Guard BWMS type approval program update
Part 2: The Coast Guard’s focus on compliance
Part 1: New ballast water series from Coast Guard’s assistant commandant for prevention policy

2015 six-part ballast water series:

Part 1: Ballast water series from the Assistant Commandant for Prevention Policy
Part 2: Shedding some light on 2012 ballast water regulations
Part 3: Ballast water – U.S. Regulations compared to International Convention
Part 4: Living vs. viable
Part 5: Ballast water type approval process
Part 6: Ballast water type approval challenges for industry

This blog is not a replacement or substitute for the formal posting of regulations and updates or existing processes for receiving formal feedback of the same. Links provided on this blog will direct the reader to official source documents, such as the Federal Register, Homeport and the Code of Federal Regulations. These documents remain the official source for regulatory information published by the Coast Guard.

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