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National Ballast Water Management Strategy

En-Sure Ltd is leading a Consortium consisting of Adi Associates Environmental Consultants Ltd, E-Cubed Consultants Ltd and Ecoserv Ltd in the drawing up of a National Ballast Water Management Strategy in light of the Ballast Water Management Convention requirements for the Ministry of Environment, Sustainable Development and Climate Change (MESDC).

The International Convention for the Control and Management of Ships Ballast Water and Sediments, drawn up by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), enters into force on the 8th September 2017. The aim of the Convention is to halt the spread of invasive alien species by international shipping in the aquatic environment. Transfer of alien species from one part of the world’s aquatic environment to another through ballast water and sediment has already resulted in devastating effects to ecosystems and dependent economic activities such as fisheries. The problem has been on the rise due to an increase in trade and traffic volume and in particular with the introduction of steel hulls which allowed vessels to use water as ballast instead of solid materials. The IMO reports that the quantity of bio-invasions remains on the rise and has yet to reach its peak.

The Convention requires standards and procedures to be in place for the management of a ship’s ballast water and sediments in line with a ship-specific management plan. As an intermediate measure ships will be allowed to exchange ballast water mid-ocean or in designated areas.

The Consortium has been engaged to prepare Malta’s National Ballast Water Management Strategy that will address the Convention requirements in the context of activities carried out in Maltese waters. In developing the National Ballast Water Management Strategy, the Consortium is consulting extensively with stakeholders from the public and private sector as well as non-governmental organisations.

(Published on 5th October 2017.)

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Posted in En-Sure Projects