Worldwide there are approximately 3,000 merchant ports and the work of the Harbour Master can vary widely from country to country and from port to port even within the same country.
Well under way
In a spate of activity since its formal launch in March, the initial phase of the Glofouling Partnerships project is now well underway with a series of technical workshops in the Pacific. This was reported by the IMO Media service on 2 July.
(See illustrations kindly provided by IMO ©).
Delivered to participants the key message was that once introduced, marine invasive species can be hard to eradicate – and invasive species represent a potential major threat to the Pacific Ocean’s biodiversity and the ecological integrity of Small Island Developing States. The GEF-UNDP-IMO GloFouling Partnerships project aims to protect marine biodiversity by addressing bioinvasions by organisms which can build up on ships’ hulls and other marine structures.
Participants from South Pacific countries took part in a five-day regional workshop from 3 to 7 June in Suva, Fiji. This provided an opportunity to outline the main instruments which aim to prevent the spread of invasive species and address fouling on ships:
As we well know implementation of these conventions and guidelines can help prevent the transfer of invasive aquatic species into the Pacific region.
During the workshop, site visits to a dockyard in Suva provided an opportunity for participants to see at first hand hull cleaning/painting, and to see where fouling can occur in niche areas such as sea chests, bow thrusters or propeller shafts.
This regional workshop was organized by the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), in collaboration with the Project Coordination Unit of the GEF-UNDP-IMO GloFouling Partnerships. The regional workshop was part funded by IMO’s Integrated Technical Cooperation programme (ITCP).
Attended was recorded by representatives from Cook Islands, Marshall Islands, the Federate States of Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, Nauru, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu. Consultants and support were also provided from Maritime New Zealand, the New Zealand National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA), and the Australian Department of Agriculture and Water Resources.
Two of the 12 Lead Partnering Countries (LPCs) of the GloFouling Partnerships hosted national workshops to review the programme of work and begin establishing national task forces. These took place in Fiji on 10 June and Tonga on 12 / 13 June. Such national meetings were attended by representatives from a wide range of government institutions and the private sector, such as the ministries of environment, fisheries, transport and infrastructure, port authority, biosecurity, port state control officers, dry docks, shipping agents and operators.
Role of national task forces
Strong support was provided by the Australian Department of Agriculture and Water Resources. One of the exercises of the participants was to review the institutions and stakeholders that should be contacted to take part in their National Task Force, to be set up in the coming months. The role of the national task forces will be to oversee the development of a strategy and action plan to implement IMO’s Biofouling Guidelines and best practices for other maritime industries.
The GloFouling Partnerships will organize similar national workshops in the remaining Lead Partnering Countries in the coming months. These Partnerships will work incollaboration between the Global Environment Facility (GEF), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and IMO.
Twelve lead partnering countries: Brazil, Ecuador, Fiji, Indonesia, Jordan, Madagascar, Mauritius, Mexico, Peru, the Philippines, Sri Lanka and Tonga); four regional organizations with the IOC-UNESCO, the World Ocean Council and numerous strategic partners have signed up to the project.
In the current context, marked by the effects of the Covid 19 pandemic, terminals are showing a considerable drop in overall port volumes. This is associated with a decline in economic activity, and with a large number of blank sailings due to shipping lines’ attempts to align capacity with existing demand.
However, the paradox is that despite the fact that calls and volume arriving at the Port of Barcelona's BEST terminal have decreased, moves per call have significantly increased. This was reported from the port on 29 June.
During week 23 (1-7 June), BEST terminal welcomed the largest vessel to call at the Port of Barcelona, MSC Sixin, with a capacity of almost 24,000 TEU.
Subsequently, similar ships from the 2M alliance (Maersk + MSC) have been arriving on a recurring basis on passage between the Far East and Europe, grouping together all the moves that a few weeks ago were made between different services of the same alliance and which were cancelled due to the exceptional situation currently experienced.
During May and June, BEST terminal saw how the number of moves per call had broken all existing records in the Port of Barcelona – starting with almost 8,000 moves in week 22, all move records broken to reach almost 8,500 moves in week 24.
This change in demand, with large cargo concentration peaks on large deep sea vessels and a smaller number of calls, directly impacts on the way terminals must approach the services they offer.
It was found that the way to put forward a valuable proposal to shipping lines with these types of calls, is to offer productivity per call that exceeds by far the average efficiency in container terminals. With this in mind, it is important to highlight the relevance of the important investments made by BEST, both in the number of cranes capable of operating these types of ship, and in the terminal operating system (TOS) at all levels.
Classification Society ClassNK announced from Tokyo on 2 July that it had released its annual report on Port State Control.
This document aims to assist ship operators and management companies in maintaining compliant operations by providing information about ships detained by PSC as well as deficiencies that were found on board from many port states in 2019.
In line with the International Safety Management (ISM) Code, PSC inspections ensure that vessels departing the port meet international standards and have proved to be highly effective in eliminating substandard ships that are in operation. They oversee not only the hardware of a ship, but also the software by examining the maintenance and operation methods being used. In addition to various figures, status of implementation and recent developments in PSC worldwide are included.
This Annual Report on Port State Control (PSC) summarises deficiencies identified during PSC inspections carried out in various countries around the world.
Class NK has prepared it with the objective of building awareness with the present state of PSC and thereby improving future onboard maintenance and inspections, and as well as Safety Management System.