The entry into force from 8 September 2017 of the BWM
convention, DNV GL says, has consequences for the shipping industry and
recommendations to ship owners.
The overall purpose of the BWM Convention
is to prevent the transport of invasive species from port/area A to port/area B and
thus prevent the destruction of marine habitats, says a DNV GL.
The BWMC requires each relevant vessel to
carry an International BWM Certificate, issued by the flag state. For a
majority of flags, DNV GL is delegated to issue such a certificate on their
behalf. The vessel shall have this certificate on board by 8 September 2017 at
the latest. DNV GL will start issuing (if delegated) such international
certificates – provided that an initial survey has been completed – from the
beginning of October 2016, even if they are not formally valid, until 8 September
The BWM Convention includes a transitional
period during which ballast water can be “exchanged” in deep seas during
voyages between ports A and B. The BWM Plan shall describe how this is done.
Eventually all relevant vessels shall have
installed a Ballast Water Treatment System (BWTS), whereby ballast water
discharged is made harmless related to invasive species. The IMO implementation
schedule for BWTS implies “first IOPP renewal survey after the entry into force
of the Convention” at the latest.
This implies that most vessels (which do
not already have a BWTS installed) will be requested to install such equipment
in the period 2017–2021 – in each case before the expiry date of the vessel’s
IOPP certificate. On a ship level, see details of the implementation scheme by
clicking on the second link below.
are prerequisites for issuing an International BWM Certificate:
Plan (exchange, treatment or both)
technical documentation for a BWTS installation (if treatment system is
Operation Manual (if BWTS is installed)
survey for exchange and/or treatment
DNV GL vessels with a voluntary Statement
of Compliance for BWM, or a voluntary class notation BWM-E/BWM-T, have already
fulfilled these prerequisites. When DNV GL is delegated by the flag
administration, the process of issuing the International BWM Certificate will
For shipowners in the process of creating
a BWM Plan, DNV GL has a helpful template that can be found at www.dnvgl.com/bwm
DNV GL also has advisory services for the
selection of the BWTS, for retrofit installations and for the creation of a BWM
Plan. Please contact your nearest DNV GL office for guidance.
Ship owners should ensure an approved BWM
Plan is on board each of their vessels. They should also make sure that the
plan is stamped “Approved” (not examined) by the flag or a recognized
organization (DNV GL as RO).
In addition, ship owners should start as
early as possible with the planning, selection and installation of a BWTS for
each relevant vessel – either owned or managed.
Ship owners should also ensure that any
BWTS installed is used for all ballasting and deballasting operations,
preferably from the moment it is installed, but at least from 8 September 2017
For vessels flying a flag which has not
yet signed the BWM Convention, ship owners should carry an approved BWM Plan
anyway as a ticket to trading internationally.