The introduction of non-native species via the discharge of ship’s ballast water is one of the main threats to marine biodiversity, with alien species often capable of out-competing native species – effective ballast water management (BWM) and the dissemination of good practice are thus essential throughout the marine community, which is why the Institute of Marine Engineering, Science and Technology (IMarEST) is the host of a BWM Special Interest Group, the Ballast Water Expert Group (BWEG).
‘Friends of BWEG’ include the International Maritime Organization’s GloBallast Partnerships Project, which is supporting the inaugural IMarEST Ballast Water Technology Conference, with its theme ‘Impending Convention Requirements and Challenges’.
Being held in London on Thursday 23 - Friday 24 February 2012 the highly topical conference is chaired by Tom Mackey, Chairman Hyde Marine and Co-Chairman of BWEG, with keynote addresses by his co-Chair, Dr David Wright, University of Maryland – ‘The challenge of achieving compliance – is it physically possible?’; and Chris Wiley, Chairman IMO BW Working Group – ‘Overview of the IMO Ballast Water Management Convention’. February’s event will build on the highly successful 2nd IMO-GloBallast and IMarEST Shipbuilders’ Forum on the Ballast Water Management Convention, held on 25 October 2011 in Istanbul (following the first such Forum held in November 2010, Singapore) with conference sessions covering ‘Ratification and Regional Initiatives’; ‘Compliance and Monitoring’; ‘Systems and Solutions’; ‘Case Histories’; and ‘Owners and Operators’.
These include presentations on ‘Enforcement of the BWMC by Port State Control’; ‘Ensuring a level playing field’; ‘US perspectives: USCG, US EPA, STEP and State Views’; ‘Choosing the right system for your ship’; ‘Retrofit challenges: When, how and where’; ‘ IMO alternative: Are port based solutions a complete answer?’; ‘Ballast water for a thirsty world’: ‘Fresh water on LNG return ballast run’; ‘Owner’s view: A convention too far’; ‘Is there a collective owners’ position?’; and ‘Can engineers meet the deadlines imposed on shipping?’.
There will also be a Round Table Discussion on ‘Regional problems of ratification’; and panels devoted to ‘Type approval procedures’; ‘Technology Panel: Developers and suppliers answer delegates’ questions’; and an Owners panel.
Registration for the two day event, which includes a conference reception on 23 February, is now open, with an early bird saving of £100 for those registering prior to 9 January; there are also preferential rates for IMarEST Members and representatives of IMarEST Marine Partner organisations.
Further information is available from firstname.lastname@example.org; www.imarest.org/events; or +44 (0)20 7382 2636; and from IMarEST at Aldgate House, 33 Aldgate High Street, London EC3N 1EN.