NewJUV_Voltaire_deployed Jan de Nul

Beyond regulations: a new notation for excellence in sustainability

Bureau Veritas is helping ship owners gain recognition for building and operating ships that go beyond regulatory requirements for environmental protection with a new notation for Ultra-Low Emission Vessels.

Low emissions have been on the regulatory agenda for some time, driven by initiatives such as CAP 2020 and the development of sustainability goals at the IMO level.

These goals include reducing CO2 emissions per transport work by at least 40% by 2030, as compared to 2008, with the aim of a 70% reduction by 2050.

To comply with existing MARPOL requirements, and reduce emissions as much as possible, ship owners are working to improve their vessels’ environmental performance, maximize energy efficiency and explore alternative fuel options.

However, some owners are going a step further in building and retrofitting environmentally friendly vessels. For those going beyond regulatory requirements, Bureau Veritas has developed a dedicated notation for Ultra-Low Emission Vessels (ULEV).

What is the ULEV notation?

Bureau Veritas’ newest notation for ultra-low emission vessels is assigned to ships that exceed existing MARPOL requirements for lowering pollutant emissions. The voluntary notation is assigned to the vessel and accounts for air quality, including hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide, NOx and particulate matter, as well as particle number. For ship owners looking to distinguish their fleets, the ULEV notation helps demonstrate their commitment to environmental protection.

First published in January 2019, Bureau Veritas developed the ULEV notation by carefully adapting the European Commission's Stage V policy for emissions reduction to the specific needs of sea-going vessels. Originally developed for internal combustion engines for non-road mobile machinery – including inland vessels – Bureau Veritas’ experts have reworked the existing requirements to develop an exacting set of standards for seagoing ships.   

New vessels with ULEV notations

Several clients have already requested the ULEV notation, including two notable vessels from Jan de Nul. The first, Les Alizés, is an offshore construction vessel and the second, Voltaire, is a jack-up installation vessel; both are under construction and slated for delivery in 2022. The Voltaire is fitted with a pioneering exhaust gas filtering system (by means of a Selective Catalytic Reduction system and a Diesel Particulate Filter).

Its onboard emission control technology will achieve ultra-low levels of hydrocarbon, carbon monoxide and particulate pollutant emissions, making it one of the world’s most environmentally friendly vessels.

A gold standard in environmental protection

Vessels carrying a Bureau Veritas ULEV notation can prove and distinguish their green credentials, a critical point for ships operating close to populated areas, including tugs, dredgers, ferries, cruise ships and offshore construction vessels. By working with Bureau Veritas to obtain the ULEV notation, ship owners who have gone the extra mile can highlight their efforts, and assert their commitment to reducing emissions and limiting their environmental impact.