The Clean Shipping Alliance expressed disappointment in the 6 April announcement from the Turkish Ministry of Environment and Urbanisation that they will restrict the discharge of wash water in the territorial waters of the country, based on its marine pollution regulation.
“We understand that Article 23 of the Regulation is intended to protect against the disposal of liquid or solid waste from vessels and their cargoes,” said Capt Mike Kaczmarek, chairman of the Clean Shipping Alliance. “But unlike the clear examples in the regulation, wash water from exhaust gas cleaning systems should not be interpreted as a form of marine pollution. These systems have been in use for decades and there is absolutely no evidence of any negative impact on marine life or sea water quality, neither in open waters nor in port environments.”
Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems (EGCS) make a positive difference to the ports and ocean environments in which ships operate and will promote global environmental progress – especially the goal of reducing the health impact from airborne sources, which is at the heart of the IMO 2020 regulation.
“We realise that the Ministry may have elected to take this step as a precaution, and we have reached out as a partner to work with the Turkish authorities, and to share the available science and data,” added Capt Kaczmarek. “But this is an important step, and will impact many ship operations.”