Dubai – RINA and the Institute of Marine Engineering, Science & Technology (IMarEST), UAE Branch hosted a knowledge sharing session on ‘The role of Classification in the implementation of the BWM Convention’ for the Middle East maritime fraternity.
Nikeel Idnani, Honorary Secretary IMarEST UAE branch, in his opening introduction, highlighted that Ballast Water are key buzzwords doing the industry rounds since 8 Sept 2016 and will be for the next 5-years. The topic is one of primary concern to ship owners as there are numerous parameters to be considered when installing the big-ticket BW Treatment System onboard a ship.
In his welcome speech, Andrea Di Bella, Middle East Area Manager RINA referred to the roaring noise of commercial realities plaguing the industry as ship owners brace themselves for upcoming regulations. He acknowledged that ship owners are encountering headwinds beyond their control.
Michael Markogiannis, Manager RINA Hellas Plan Approval & Technical Support Centre in his key-note address updated the audience on the status of the Convention, main requirements and regulation timelines, steps in selecting a treatment system, procurement specifications, documentation to be submitted, system related and installation criteria, testing issues, revision of G8 Guidelines and RINA’s activities.
Responding to the vociferous frustrations of a ship owner in the audience, soon to be burdened with the multi-million dollar BWTS which is a dead investment during challenging business conditions, Michael sympathetically reiterated the harsh reality with his candid comment, “The eggs are broken. Compliance is non-negotiable”.
Rajnish Verma, Director, Vedam Design, was the second speaker. In his presentation ‘BWM Convention Compliance – Optimum approach for retrofits’, Rajnish mapped the available BWTS technologies stating that each method had it’s own advantages & disadvantages. After equipment selection, it was important to follow a structured project methodology including surveys/3D Scan, Engineering and Project Management which includes Class Approvals, Vendors/Workshop co-ordination & supervision. He explained 2 case studies involving BWTS selection for a Capesize Bulk carrier and UV equipment installation on a 5500 dwt Multi-Purpose Carrier.
Each presentation was followed by a lively interactive discussion between the speakers and the audience who savored the insight. Their numerous questions and comments were challenging and interesting. While technological opportunities such as Big data, Automation, fuel efficiency and optimized ship operations were cited by a ship owner as being on his radar, the more pragmatic realities of complying with regulations and cost control were cited as being higher up his agenda.
Sheel Cabral, Committee Member of IMarEST UAE presented tokens of appreciation to Rajnish and Michael.
Some lucky members of the audience were winners at a business card raffle draw with prizes which were donated by the Ramada, RINA, Dockendale Ship Management, Gulf Navigation, Aqualis Offshore, JO (ME) Engineering and personal contributions from Mr. NMC Nair of IMarE (India) and 30+ years member of the IMarEST – Mr, Ravi Senaratne.
The evening culminated with Cocktails & Canapés graciously sponsored by RINA for the 116 attendees in the Ramada Jumeirah hotel.