Applicability: Shipbuilders, designers, owners, operators and managers intending to operate in the Antarctic area from March 1, 2016

A change to MARPOL Annex 1 (Chapter 9, Regulation 43) means that use of heavy grade oil (HGO) as ballast in the Antarctic area* is now prohibited.

This new requirement applies to both new and existing ships operating in the Antarctic area from March 1, 2016, and is in addition to the existing Antarctic area ban on carriage of HGO in bulk as cargo or carriage and use as fuel.

The remainder of Regulation 43 remains the same. The specification of HGO is unchanged. If previous operations have included the carriage or use of HGOs, cleaning and flushing of oil pipelines is not required. The ban does not apply to vessels engaged in securing the safety of ships or in search and rescue operations.

* The Antarctic area is defined as the sea area south of Latitude 60°S

What will the new requirement mean?

Shipowners and operators need to ensure that ships have the capability to discharge all heavy grade oil to available shore facilities before entering the Antarctic area. Shipbuilders and designers need to ensure that ships intending to travel in the Antarctic area are designed and built to be able to comply with the new regulation.

Lloyd’s Register can provide further guidance and support if you have any queries regarding this new requirement.

Background information

The amendment to Regulation 43 was adopted on 17 October, 2014, at the 67th session of the IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC 67) and is detailed in IMO Resolution MEPC.256(67)

For further information

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