Marine Link
Thursday, October 18, 2018

Environmental Protection Agency News

Scrapping Risks

© Gudellaphoto / Adobe Stock

Traditionally, when a ship reached the end of its economic life, the owner sold it, often to a cash buyer, for scrapping with little consideration of the next step. Many ships ended up on a beach in south Asia (India, Pakistan, or Bangladesh) where they were cut apart and the metal was sold for scrap. The working conditions were sometimes dangerous and hazardous to the workers’ health. In addition, little was sometimes done to protect the environment. For many ship owners these days…

Wärtsilä 34DF Engine Awarded EPA Tier III Certification

A six-cylinder Wärtsilä 34DF dual-fuel engine (Image: Wärtsilä)

Wärtsilä marks another milestone for its Wärtsilä 34DF dual-fuel engine.The 34DF engine has been awarded the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Tier III certification for diesel mode operation when installed together with the Wärtsilä NOx Reducer (NOR) system, a selective catalytic reduction (SCR) system that converts nitrogen oxides (NOx) with the aid of a catalyst into diatomic nitrogen (N2) and water.Wärtsilä said it is the first engine manufacturer to be awarded…

AWIA/WRDA Overwhelmingly Passes in Senate

File Image: AdobeStock / © SunnyS

Bill now heads to White House for President Trump’s signature.Today, the Senate voted 99-1 in favor of America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018/Water Resources Development Act, otherwise known as WRDA 2018. The Bill passed in the U.S. House by unanimous voice vote (435-0) in August.“The passage of WRDA 2018 is a win for the Nation’s towboat operators, freight shippers, ports and labor and conservation groups that rely on an efficient inland waterways system,” said Mike Toohey, President and CEO of the Waterways Council, Inc. (WCI).

EPA: VGP Will Not be Reissued This Year

The EPA has provided updated advice on the reissuance of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Vessel General Permit (VGP).The 2013 VGP will not be reissued prior to its December 18, 2018 expiration date, but will be administratively continued and remain in effect until a new permit is issued. Owners/operators of vessels operating under the administratively continued permit are expected to comply with the terms and conditions of that permit.

APM Terminals Uruguay Inches to Zero Carbon Emissions

Photo: APM Terminals

APM Terminals Inland Services Uruguay (also known as Montevideo Port Services SA) switched on 648 solar panels this month, capable of producing 228.6 MWh per year, enough to meet up to 90 percent of the facilities entire annual consumption.By switching to their own renewable energy source, Inland Services Uruguay, the largest equipment maintenance and repair provider in the country, will reduce its CO2 emissions by almost 50 tonnes per year. To put this in perspective, according to the United States Environmental Protection Agency it would take around 1…

Answering the Call for Environmental Answers

The RDC project team poses on USCGC Hollyhock after completion of the offshore mitigation system prototype test.  From left to right, LT Charles Clark, Alexander Balsley, and Coast Guard Academy Cadet 2/c Valerie Hines.)

The Coast Guard has developed two separate mitigation system prototypes specifically designed for inland and offshore environments and tested them in the Kalamazoo River and Lake Huron.Whenever there is a need for oil, there will always be a risk of oil spills. This is no less true for bituminous sands, commonly known as oil sands or tar sands. Oil sands are mostly found in Alberta, Canada, and comprised of bitumen, sand, clay and water. They are typically viscous, with a texture similar to peanut butter.

Keehi Marine to Reduce Stormwater Discharge Pollution

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has reached an agreement with Hawaiian repair yard Keehi Marine, Inc. to reduce pollution in its stormwater discharges to Keehi Lagoon and the Pacific Ocean.Acting on a tip it received from the public, EPA performed an inspection in April 2017 at the Honolulu boatyard and found accumulation of fine sediment and debris without controls that prevent stormwater and associated debris from entering stormwater discharges and flowing into Keehi Lagoon and the Pacific Ocean. It was discovered that recent flooding at a covered work area indicating pollutants had washed offsite. From September 2016 to December 2017…

REGULATORY WATCH: The Global 0.50% Sulfur Cap: 30 months and counting down …

Industry frets about the coming deadline. Shipping desperately wants to be ready, but will global shore-based infrastructure and refining capacity match the demand that is sure to come? And … are regulators listening to industry’s concerns? In early June, the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) held a public workshop in Washington to help the agencies prepare for the January 1, 2020 deadline for worldwide implementation of very low sulfur marine fuel that meets the new 0.50% sulfur cap as set forth by the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

The EPA's Clean Water Act and Understanding VGP

The Vessel General Permit (VGP) falls under the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (FWPCA), better known as the Clean Water Act. It is administered by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), an agency not well known or understood by the maritime industry.For years, the EPA had adopted a policy of broadly exempting discharges into the water that were incidental to normal operation of vessels. That changed after environmental advocacy groups prevailed in a judicial challenge. The first iteration of the VGP entered into effect in 2008 and remained in effect until replaced by the current iteration in 2013.

New Deere Marine Engine Ships

John Deere Power Systems is shipping the new PowerTech 4045SFM85 marine engine to boat owners and builders. Photo: John Deere Power Systems

John Deere Power Systems is shipping the new PowerTech 4045SFM85 marine engine to boat owners and builders. The manufacturer touts the PowerTech 4045SFM85's power-to-weight, torque and compact size, saying it is suited for planing and semi-displacement hulls.The PowerTech 4045SFM85 engine has two ratings:--  M4 rating with 205 kW (275 hp) at 2600 rpm and--  M5 rating with 235 kW (315 hp) at 2800 rpm. These ratings are ideal for light-duty commercial vessels, high-speed governmental applications and high-speed pleasure crafts.

Thordon Bearings: EAL Protection in a Class of its Own

The ideal solution for the tightening regulatory noose also brings a different (and welcome) shade of ‘green’ for workboat operators.As the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA ramps up enforcement of regulations that mandate that all vessels over 24 meters (78 feet) operating in US waters must switch over to EALs in all oil-to-sea interfaces before their next drydocking, it is an arguably good time to be in the lubricants business. At the same time, Thordon Bearings, a manufacturer of seawater lubricated bearings for the marine industry has its own thoughts on that very topic.

US Delays New VGP Requirements Until March 2019

Pic: Gard

While waiting for the new Vessel General Permit (VGP) to be finalized, operators must file a Notice of Intent with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) prior to December 18, 2018 in order for vessels to continue to operate under their current VGP also after this date.According to a recent Regulatory Update published by the classification society American Bureau of Shipping (ABS), the EPA has further delayed the release its new Vessel General Permit (VGP 3.0).The proposed…

Washington State's New Ferry Starts Operations

Suquamish in Elliott Bay during sea trials in July 2018. (Photo: Washington State Department of Transportation)

The newest auto/passenger vessel to serve the United States' largest ferry system has made its debut on the U.S. West Coast.Washington State Ferries (WSF) began carrying passengers aboard the newest state ferry, Suquamish, sailing from Clinton, Wash. on October 4.The 1,500 passenger and 144 vehicle capacity Suquamish, constructed by U.S. shipbuilder Vigor and christened earlier this year, is the fourth and last of the funded Olympic Class ferries, built to replace the midcentury-era Evergreen State Class vessels.

Environmentalists File Second Complaint to Block Nord Stream 2

Photo courtesy of Nord Stream 2

Environmental campaign group ClientEarth has filed a complaint with a court in Sweden to block the construction through Swedish waters of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline intended to transport Russian gas to Germany, it said on Wednesday.Sweden approved the pipeline in June, but ClientEarth's complaint argues that the Swedish Ministry of Enterprise and Innovation failed to consider the impact the project would have on wildlife in the Baltic Sea.The work involves detonating World…

Study: Nonnative Species Carried in Lakers' Ballast Water

© johnsroad7 / Adobe Stock

A recent study on nonindigenous species of plankton in ballast discharges from U.S. and Canadian lakers to western Lake Superior documented five species of nonindigenous zooplankton not yet established in western Lake Superior, including Hemimysis anomala (“bloody red shrimp”), in ballast water discharged there. It also detected, in uptake water, a species of zooplankton (Paraleptastacus wilsoni) that had not previously been recorded in the Great Lakes.Some of the species, including this one, live in harbor sediment and may have escaped routine surveillance to date.

Trump Proposes Boost to Maritime Infrastructure Investment

© Marek Slusarczyk / Adobe Stock

On February 12, President Trump released his highly anticipated infrastructure proposal, a “Legislative Outline for Rebuilding Infrastructure in America.” Unlike prior federal infrastructure development strategies, which rarely discussed the need for maritime infrastructure investment, the proposal places maritime infrastructure on equal footing with other surface transportation modes in terms of potential funding opportunities. The outline contains proposals that would create three new major programs…

Dieselgate 101: Opening the Door to Cleaner Engines

© itsallgood / Adobe Stock

Don’t do the crime if you can’t do the time – or at least pay the staggering fine. And pay it forward, Volkwagen will. The auto manufacturer got caught using software to trick emissions control software during testing on some cars – nearly 500,000 2.0 liter and 83,000 3.0 liter diesel vehicles – in order to get a passing grade, after which the cars operated in violation of the Clean Air Act. The years of cheating on vehicles from model years 2009 to 2016 sold and leased in the U.S., resulted in emissions of up to 40 times the permitted level of nitrogen oxides (NOx) and particulate matter.

Maritime to Get Biggest Bang for VW Settlement Bucks

© tarasov_vl / Adobe Stock

Imagine a settlement over falsifying emission levels in another transportation sector dropping money onto your deck. Who knew? But it’s true. The $2.9 billion settlement fund Volkswagen agreed to capitalize for distribution across all 50 states, tribal lands and Puerto Rico, as a result of “dieselgate,” its criminal dodging of required auto emission levels, presents an unparalleled opportunity to maritime companies that want to move their noxious diesel engines up a couple of EPA notches, and stick someone else with close to half the bill or more.

Plibrico, NMBS Partner for Cruise Ship Repair

Photo: Plibrico

Plibrico, an industry leader in monolithic refractories, and maritime repair specialist Nordic Made Boiler Services, Inc. (NMBS), announced a global strategic partnership to deliver retrofit supplies and services to the world's cruise ship operators. With the partnership, NMBS will use Plibrico's Plico brand refractories in the retrofitting of cruise ship boilers and waste incinerators needed to ensure passenger safety and comfort. "Partnering with Nordic Made Boiler Services…

600 Gallons of Coolant Spills into Straits of Mackinac

(Photo: U.S. Coast Guard)

Hundreds of gallons of mineral oil has been released from a leaking underwater utility line in Michigan’s Straits of Mackinac, this week. Initial reports from the responsible party, American Transmission Company (ATC), indicate that approximately 600 gallons of product has been released, with maximum spill potential of more than 4,000 gallons. The U.S. Coast Guard said it has established a Unified Command comprised of Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, county emergency managers, local tribes, the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S.

sVGP Compliance Difficulties Continue for the Workboat Sector

(Image: Ecochlor)

The recent implementation (January 19, 2018) of the long-delayed small Vessel General Permit (sVGP) requirement has major implications for environmental regulations in general, and specifically how the compliance difficulties continue for vessel owners with no real end in sight. Moreover, the U.S. Coast Guard’s (USCG) recent publication of NVIC 01-18 (March 1, 2018), while helpful in advising owners on how to comply with the ballast water regulations, does not relieve vessels from the underlying requirements…

EPA Announces Funding to Reduce Diesel Emissions

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / © dbvirago)

Preference given to fleets in areas facing air quality challenges. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the availability of grant funding to modernize the nation’s diesel fleet by retrofitting or replacing vehicles with cleaner, more efficient diesel engines. EPA anticipates awarding approximately $40 million in Diesel Emission Reduction Program (DERA) grant funding to eligible applicants, subject to the availability of funds. “These grants will incentivize improvements to aging diesel fleets and improve air quality throughout the country…

New EAL Grease for ATB Couplings

Specialty lubricants manufacturer Klϋber Lubrication recently introduced a new environmentally acceptable lubricant (EAL) grease for articulated tug and barge (ATB) couplings, Klüberbio AM 12-501.Klüberbio AM 12-501 is an adhesive EAL grease designed specifically for the large plain bearings, rams and connectors used in ATB coupling systems. It is based on fully synthetic ester oils for high performance and biodegradability, aluminum complex thickener for adhesion and resistance to water and select additives to reduce wear.Klüberbio AM 12-501 meets ATB coupling system OEM specifications for pumpability, resistance to water washout and spray off, corrosion protection and load carrying capabilities.

Maritime Reporter Magazine Cover Oct 2018 - Marine Design Annual

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