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Vessel Pollution

Ship Company to Pay $10.5M for Covering up Oil Pollution

MSC Ship Management (Hong Kong) Limited—a Hong Kong-based container ship company—has agreed to plead guilty to charges that it engaged in conspiracy, obstruction of justice, destruction of evidence, false statements and violated the Act to Prevent Pollution from Ships, the Department of Justice announced today. Per the terms of a plea agreement that must be approved by the court, MSC Ship Management will pay $10.5 million in penalties. This is the largest fine in which a single vessel has been charged with deliberate pollution and the largest criminal fine paid by a defendant in an environmental case in Massachusetts history. According to the plea agreement, including a joint factual statement, MSC Ship Management will plead guilty to a criminal information which charges that a specially fitted steel pipe, referred to as the “magic pipe,” was used on the MSC Elena, a 30,971 ton container ship, to circumvent required ship pollution prevention equipment and discharge oil sludge and oil contaminated waste directly overboard. Upon the discovery of this bypass equipment during a U.S. Coast Guard inspection in Boston Harbor on May 16, 2005, senior company officials in Hong Kong directed crew members to lie to the Coast Guard. Additionally, senior ship engineers ordered that documents be destroyed and concealed.

Ship’s Chief Engineer Convicted in Vessel Pollution Case

Mark Humphries, the chief engineer of the M/V Tanabata, an American-flagged car-carrier ship based in Baltimore, was convicted by a jury on one count of conspiracy and two counts of making false statements, announced Ronald J. Tenpas, Acting Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division and Rod J. Rosenstein, U.S. Attorney for the District of Maryland. At trial, it was proven that the M/V Tanabata had a removable bypass pipe or “magic

Canada Fines Vessel Owner for Dumping Oil

Transport Minister David Collenette today announced that the federal government has successfully prosecuted the M/V Cala Palamos, a Cypriot-registered container vessel, owned by Nordpartner of Limassol, Cyprus and operated by Oldendorff K.E., based in Limassol, Cyprus, for the Canada Shipping Act (CSA) violation of unlawfully discharging an oily substance into Canadian waters. The pollution incident occurred while the vessel was berthed at Pier 36, in the Port of Halifax, on February 21

Vessel Charged with Illegal Discharge in Canadian Waters

Transport Minister David Collenette today announced that the federal government has successfully prosecuted the MV Cape Benat, a Liberian-registered chemical tanker, for spilling canola oil in Vancouver Harbour. The pollution incident occurred while the vessel was loading canola crude oil at Vanterm, in the Port of Vancouver, on November 23 and 24, 1999. The MV Cape Benat is owned by the Cape Benat Navigation Company of Liberia and operated by Columbia Ship Management of Cyprus

Greek Operator Pleads Guilty

Pendulum Shipmanagement Inc., a ship management company, headquartered in Greece, pleaded guilty on Jan. 13 to charges that it conspired with members of the crew of the M/V Quantum, a commercial cargo ship, to defraud the United States by falsifying the vessel’s Oil Record Book, announced Acting United States Attorney Laurie Magid. United States District Judge Berle M. Schiller immediately sentenced the company to a $1

Transas Installs Jordan VTS System

Transas Middle East instals & commissions standalone AIS solution at the Port of Aqaba, Jordan.   Transas standalone AIS solution incorporates the latest VTS technology and meets all international standards. At the core of the system is Transas AIS Base station T214, state-of-the art solution designed specifically for coastal surveillance, vessel traffic monitoring and ports management. Intended to cover Aqaba Port, its inner port waters, navigational channels and fairways

Kent Reliant Refloated

The M/V Kent Reliant was successfully refloated yesterday at afternoon after a thirteen-day salvage and response operation. The 522-ft. cargo ship, grounded outside San Juan harbor September 18. Titan Maritime salvage company removed most of the fuel oil from the vessel, and oil containment booms were pre-staged in environmentally sensitive areas to ensure minimal impact on the marine environment. Next enough cargo was removed to lighten the vessel so that it could safely be pulled from its

EMSA Oil Recovery Vessel Contracts Signed

The European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) has finalized contracts to strengthen its pollution response coverage in the Atlantic and Mediterranean areas. UK ship owner James Fisher Everard will provide a pollution response arrangement based on a pool of three vessels normally trading between the UK and Ireland. Spanish company Mureloil will provide a pool of two vessels which operate in southern Spain. Maltese ship owner Tankship Management will add a vessel to the

Bunker Convention to Enter Force in '08

Pollution damage from fuel oil carried on ships will be covered in 2008 with entry into force of international bunkers liability and compensation convention The last significant gap in the international regime for compensating victims of oil spills from ships is set to be closed, with the entry into force on 21 November 2008 of an international treaty covering liability and compensation for pollution damage caused by spills of oil, when carried as fuel in ships' bunkers

USCG Operation Clean River

Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit Portland, Ore., conducted Operation Clean River, a large-scale operation to ensure environmental compliance onboard commercial deep draft vessels, Wednesday, Jan. 19. Clean River covered both the Columbia and Willamette Rivers in an effort to examine all vessels that were currently moored or anchored from Portland downriver to Longview, Wash. Specifically, the Coast Guard’s Port State Control Branch verified vessel compliance with both international and

Tug Allision Causes Diesel Spill in Texas

 U.S. Coast Guard Sector Corpus Christi and the Texas General Land Office are responding to an oil spill at mile marker 667 on the Intracoastal Waterway near Port Isabel, Wednesday.   Watchstanders at Sector Corpus Christi received a report that the uninspected towing vessel Capt

MOL Wins "Best Practice Award of Seafarers Onboard Safety"

Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd. today announced that its “MOL Body FIT Exercise” was awarded the “The Best Practice Award of Seafarers Onboard Safety, 2016 MLIT” from the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT)

LNG Sector Ready to meet Industry Demand

Peter Keller Photo SEALNG

Ahead of the 70th Session of the IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC), the cross-industry coalition 'SEA\LNG' has highlighted the ability of the liquefied natural gas (LNG) sector to meet the future emissions requirements of the global shipping industry.

Changing Spill Risk in a Changing Arctic Landscape

Dagmar Schmidt Etkin

Industry analyst and environmental consultant Dagmar Schmidt Etkin, PhD, takes a hard look at a rapidly shifting operational landscape in the Arctic. Always an honest broker of information, Etkin tells it like it is.    Oil spill risk is present anywhere that oil is present in

BMT, Maersk Partner for Online Vessel Inspection

Photo: Danny Cornelissen (Courtesy BMT)

BMT Group subsidiary BMT Surveys has partnered with Maersk to develop an online Marine Application for survey, Trend Evaluation and reporting (MATE) platform, which provides real-time data on the condition of vessels and changes in that condition over time.  

Salvors to Remove Fuel from Capsized Riverboat

Spirit of Sacramento capsized near Bethel Island, Calif. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Adam Stanton)

Efforts to prepare the capsized riverboat Spirit of Sacramento for fuel removal operations are being conducted by the U.S. Coast Guard, California Department of Fish and Wildlife's Office of Spill Prevention and Response and other partner agencies.  

U.S. meeting on ocean conservation nets $5.3 billion in pledges

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry,

International participants at a high-level conference on the world's oceans pledged more than $5.3 billion for conservation and designated vast areas as protected waters, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said on Friday. More than 90 countries took part in the two-day conference

IMO Releases New Guides for Energy Efficiency Regulations

Photo:  International Maritime Organization (IMO)

 Three new guides that will support States to effectively implement IMO-adopted mandatory energy-efficiency measures for shipping have been rolled out during a training under the Global Environment Facility (GEF)-United Nations Development Program (UNDP)-International Maritime Organization

More Plastic than Fish in the Ocean

Photo: International Maritime Organization

 Did you know that by 2050 there could be more plastics in the ocean than fish, if human habits don’t change?    India Clean Seas Conference taking place in Goa, India (22-24 September), discussed what needs to be done to keep the oceans clean.   

RSC Bio Solutions Launches Environmental Education Campaign


RSC Bio Solutions, a global leader in environmentally acceptable lubricants (EALs) and cleaners, has recently launched a new education campaign aimed at informing the industry and the general public on the causes and dangerous effects of petroleum-based oil spills and leaks on both land and water

Governments Spur Crackdown on Sea Pollution

File photo: Robert Hendry

Governments at the recent meeting of Parties which regulate the dumping of wastes at sea have called for more action to address marine litter in the oceans, particularly plastics and microplastics, which present a severe and long lasting threat to the marine environment.  

Shippers Brace for IMO's New SOx Rules

Photo: Eric Norcross

IMO to decide whether to introduce rules in 2020, or 2025; EU, China already pushing for stricter regulation. The global shipping industry is bracing for a key regulatory decision that could mark a milestone in reducing maritime pollution

40 Years Protecting the Mediterranean

Photo: International Maritime Organization (IMO)

 International Maritime Organization (IMO) joined celebrations marking four decades of cooperation in the Mediterranean to prevent and combat marine pollution from ships under the Regional Marine Pollution Emergency Response Centre for the Mediterranean Sea (REMPEC).   

Hanjin, MSC Vessels Collide off Singapore

Photo: Hanjin Shipping

 The container ship Hanjin New York dragged anchor and collided with container carrier MSC Claudia off Singapore, say local media reports.   The incident that occurred at around 6pm last Friday caused 11 empty containers to fall overboard

Togo Ratifies High Seas Intervention Treaty

Photo: International Maritime Organization (IMO)

 Togo has become the 89th State to ratify International Maritime Organization (IMO)’s International Convention Relating to Intervention on the High Seas in Cases of Oil Pollution Casualties of 1969.    The Convention affirms the right of a coastal State to take necessary

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