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Environmental Monitoring


February 2016 Issue

MCZ Assessments for
Marine License Applications

The Marine Management Organisation (MMO) has recently introduced Marine Conservation Zone (MCZ) Assessments, which must now be completed for marine license applications for development proposals in and around MCZs. They are required in accordance with the MMO’s own regulatory obligations under Section 126 of the Marine & Coastal Access Act 2009. Currently 27 MCZs are designated around the English coast, both inshore and offshore. A decision is expected early in 2016 with regard to the possible designation of a further 23 MCZs.

MCZs provide new protection for broad-scale habitats and some species, and further protection for all species and habitats via conservation objectives for each species and habitat in each MCZ.

Fugro SFD2 Completes
Australia Investigation

Fugro’s Seafloor Drill 2 (SFD2) successfully completed a challenging multisite investigation across the Northwest Shelf of Australia, encountering variable calcareous sediments and delivering results to support a jack-up drilling campaign.

The work was performed in water depths up to 112 m and required in-situ testing and sampling to a total length of 323 m. The SFD2 proved effective in sampling some of the world’s most difficult seabed sediments, from ultrasoft carbonate muds to highly weathered limestone. Its success can be attributed to a number of factors, including the flexibility provided by the proprietary wireline system, the innovative approach to mud supply and a hands-on approach by the geotechnical drillers. An additional advantage was the ability to airfreight the SFD2 to Australia.

Tech Demos

Sonardyne International Ltd., UK successfully demonstrated its wireless integrity monitoring technologies during a series of in-water demonstrations held at NASA’s Neutral Buoyancy Lab (NBL) in Houston, Texas.

Hosted by OneSubsea, a Cameron and Schlumberger Co., senior oil company executives, chief engineers, equipment specifiers and offshore operators attended the two-day technical symposium in November to witness the capabilities of Sonardyne’s and other vendors’ subsea innovations. The event was followed by a further two days of demonstrations organized by Saab Seaeye, with Sonardyne as its primary technology partner.

NBL is an underwater training facility used to prepare astronauts for the microgravity conditions they will experience in space. At 202 ft. long, 101 ft. wide and 40 ft. deep, and holding 6.2 million gallons of water, the pool is the largest indoor body of water in the world and contains a full-size replica of the International Space Station (ISS).

PureSOx Systems for
Two Container Feeders

Buss Shipping, the shipping arm of the worldwide maritime logistics service provider Buss Group, will install Alfa Laval PureSOx exhaust gas cleaning systems on two of its container vessels. The SOx scrubbers will secure valuable fuel economy.

The vessels are container feeders of 1,025 TEU that operate exclusively in Emission Control Areas (ECAs). Since they frequent the low-alkalinity waters between Rotterdam and St. Petersburg, as well as ports like Hamburg with zero-discharge requirements, a scrubber with closed-loop mode was a necessity.

The vessels will each receive a hybrid PureSOx system with multiple inlets, connecting the main engine and two auxiliary engines to one U-design scrubber. In contrast to earlier systems with multiple inlets, the inlets will now lead into a single scrubber jet section, an advance in construction that will make the scrubber even more compact.

The shipyard German Dry Docks GmbH & co. KG will install the systems following deliveries by Alfa Laval in January and February 2016.

Thome Group Gets
Eco Office Status

Thome Group in the Philippines has become the first local company to be accredited with Eco Office certification.

The international ship manager has successfully completed an environmental audit throughout its Singapore offices to achieve Eco Office status, which is regarded as the strictest of its kind in the region.

Following a comprehensive audit of a number of Thome Group corporate locations in the Philippines, four Thome Group companies have been accredited: Thome Ship Management Pte Ltd. – ROHQ, TSM Shipping (Phils) Inc., MST Marine Services (Phils) Inc., and Timur Shipping (Phils) Inc.

This award recognizes Thome Group as an organization that embraces its duty of care to the environment in which it operates.

USCG Declines MPN
Method to Evaluate UV Tech

The U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) has declined the 10(b1) applications to alternatively use the most probable number (MPN) method for evaluating the biological efficacy of UV treatment technologies that had been submitted individually by four ballast water management system (BWMS) manufacturers, DNV GL reported. The rationale given by the USCG is that the wording in the regulation is live/dead, and that the MPN method does not evaluate the performance of a BWMS to that discharge standard. The MPN method evaluates the ability of an organism to reproduce and, hence, its ability to colonize a new environment. As such, it does not provide a result equivalent to that of the USCG’s preferred method (vital staining).

DNV GL argues the MPN method is the most relevant method and is a reliable way of evaluating the performance of UV technologies. That method has been validated to a greater extent than most of the methods described in the Environmental Technology Verification (ETV) Protocol (prescriptive guidance incorporated by reference to U.S. regulation), and UV technologies are commonly accepted in other water treatment industries.

DNV GL has provided much of the MPN analysis done for the four BWMS manufacturers and expects the manufacturers to appeal the USCG decision.

A likely consequence of the USCG decision is that the first BWMS system to be type approved by the USCG will probably be available summer 2016. This will not be a UV system.


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