Applicability: shipowners, ship operators and ship masters.
The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) recently published a marine notice advising shipowners, ship operators and ship masters of the Australian requirements for using Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems (EGCS) in Australian waters.
The use of an EGCS is permitted as an option to comply with the low sulphur fuel requirements of MARPOL Annex VI, provided that the system is approved by the vessel’s flag State Administration, or a Recognised Organisation appointed by the flag State.
Crew members are required to be trained to use the EGCS, and the system needs to be properly maintained and fully operational.
Before being discharged into Australian waters, EGCS wash water needs to comply with discharge water criteria set out in the IMO 2021 Guidelines for Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems (Resolution MEPC.340 (77)). Please note that certain Port Authorities may discourage vessels from discharging wash water within port limits.
Action in the event of EGCS failure
If there is a failure of the EGCS, action is needed to identify and remedy the problem. If the failure lasts more than one hour or is repeated, a report needs to be sent to the flag State Administration and the Competent Authority of the Port State. The report has to include details of actions taken to address the failure.
If EGCS problem cannot be rectified within one hour, the vessel is required to change over to compliant fuel oil. If the vessel does not have sufficient compliant fuel oil on board, a report needs to be sent to relevant authorities detailing the vessel’s proposed actions, which could include bunkering compliant fuel oil or repairs to the EGCS.
Where this occurs in Australian waters, the report needs to be sent to AMSA email@example.com.
For more information, please visit the AMSA website.